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10 Tips To Get Your Business In The News

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Reporters are bombarded every day with hundreds of news pitches from businesses, public relations agencies and entrepreneurs all looking to make headlines. But why do certain stories get chosen for coverage while others are declined or ignored? 



Here are 10 tips suggested by media professionals to help you and your business make the news.

Published in: Business, News & Politics
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10 Tips To Get Your Business In The News

  1. 1. HOW YOUR BUSINESS CAN MAKE THE NEWS 10 Best Practices For Pitching The Media 10 t sugge ips by the sted ne media ws Presented by HERO|farm Marketing Strategy & Design www.hero-farm.com
  2. 2. 1 WHY DOES YOUR NEWS MATTER?
  3. 3. 1 WHY DOES YOUR NEWS MATTER? YOU MAY THINK YOUR BUSINESS OR PRODUCT IS THE GREATEST THING TO EVER EXIST, BUT WHY WOULD SOMEONE WHO HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH IT BE INTERESTED IN YOUR NEWS? YOUR NEWS IS COMPETING WITH HUNDREDS OF OTHER PITCHES, ALL HOPING TO MAKE HEADLINES. YOU NEED A HOOK/ANGLE THAT CATCHES FIRE AND INTRIGUES THE AUDIENCE TO LEARN MORE. WHAT KINDS OF STORIES MAKE YOU STOP AND TAKE NOTICE? WHICH HEADLINES GRAB YOU MOST?
  4. 4. 2 KNOW THE AUDIENCE
  5. 5. 2 KNOW THE AUDIENCE READ UP ON THE MEDIA OUTLET AND REPORTER TO WHICH YOU ARE PITCHING. WHAT STORIES HAVE THEY PREVIOUSLY DONE? IS THEIR AUDIENCE CONSERVATIVE? YOUNGER? IS IT A VISUAL MEDIUM (LIKE TV NEWS) THAT NEEDS INTERESTING VIDEO TO ACCOMPANY THE STORY OR IS IT TEXT HEAVY (PRINT NEWS) WHERE STILL PICTURES WILL DO BEST? EVERY MEDIA OUTLET HAS A SPECIFIC DEMOGRAPHIC THEY CATER TO AND MOST REPORTERS HAVE CERTAIN TOPICS THEY COVER. FIND THE ONES THAT MATCH UP BEST WITH YOUR NEWS. CHECK THE OUTLET’S WEBSITE TO SEE IF THEY HAVE REPORTERS LISTED IN SPECIFIC AREAS.
  6. 6. 3 FLESH IT OUT
  7. 7. 3 FLESH IT OUT HAVE THE PITCH READY TO GO AS IF THE REPORTER WILL WANT TO RUN WITH IT IMMEDIATELY. DO NOT LEAVE YOUR NEWS HALF-BAKED, AND BE READY TO ANSWER QUESTIONS. THE LESS GROUNDWORK A REPORTER HAS TO DO FOR YOUR STORY THE MORE LIKELY THEY ARE TO USE IT. REMEMBER THE FIVE W’S: WHO, WHAT, WHEN, WHERE AND WHY.
  8. 8. CHECK THE CALENDAR 4 Photo credit: Stephanie Snyder/Cronkite News Service
  9. 9. CHECK THE CALENDAR KEEP IN MIND WHAT ELSE MAY BE GOING ON IN THE LOCAL, NATIONAL AND INTERNATIONAL NEWS WHEN YOU GO TO MAKE YOUR PITCH. IF A MAJOR STORY IS BREAKING YOU WILL MOST LIKELY NOT GET COVERAGE. REPORTERS ARE TYPICALLY TIED UP ON THE MOST PRESSING STORIES AT HAND, SUCH AS A POLITICAL ISSUE OR SCANDAL, AND THE OUTLET’S FOCUS GOES ALONG WITH IT. ALSO, CHECK THE MEDIA OUTLET'S WEBSITE TO SEE IF THEY HAVE AN EDITORIAL CALENDAR. 4 Photo credit: Stephanie Snyder/Cronkite News Service
  10. 10. 5 BE CONCISE
  11. 11. 5 BE CONCISE A REPORTER'S INBOX IS FLOODED WITH HUNDREDS OF EMAILS EVERY DAY AND THEY OFTEN HAVE ONLY A FEW SECONDS TO SCAN YOUR PITCH. QUICKLY CATCH THEIR ATTENTION! PUT THE MOST IMPORTANT, KEY POINTS AT THE BEGINNING OF THE EMAIL (WHO, WHAT, WHEN, WHERE, WHY) AND HIGHLIGHT THEM IN BOLD. ALSO, IF YOU CAN'T FIT THE MAIN POINT OF WHAT MAKES YOUR NEWS INTERESTING INTO ONE SENTENCE YOU MAY BEED TO RETHINK YOUR PITCH. LASTLY, DON'T BURY THE MAIN POINT LIKE THIS: USE AS FEW WORDS AS POSSIBLE — EDIT YOUR PITCH, RE-EDIT, AND THEN EDIT SOME MORE.
  12. 12. 6 DROP BIG NAMES
  13. 13. 6 DROP BIG NAMES ARE YOU GOING TO HAVE SOMEONE WITH A NOTABLE NAME LIKE A CELEBRITY OR GOVERNMENT OFFICIAL ON HAND FOR YOUR GRAND OPENING, PRESS CONFERENCE OR OTHER TYPE OF EVENT? BE SURE TO MENTION IT IN YOUR PITCH. BIG NAMES USUALLY DRAWS NEWS COVERAGE, SO BE SURE TO CALL NAMES OUT.
  14. 14. 7 CUSTOMIZE YOUR PITCHES
  15. 15. 7 CUSTOMIZE YOUR PITCHES MASS EMAILS ARE AS IRRITATING TO REPORTERS AS THEY ARE TO YOU - SO DON'T DO IT! WHEN EMAILING A REPORTER ADDRESS IT TO HIM OR HER SPECIFICALLY AND MAKE SURE IT IS CUSTOMIZED FOR THE MEDIA OUTLET'S AUDIENCE. WHY WOULD YOUR NEWS BE IMPORTANT TO THEIR VIEWERS/READERS? IF YOU WERE IN THE REPORTER’S SHOES, WOULD YOUR PITCH BE COMPELLING ENOUGH TO DESERVE VALUABLE COVERAGE TIME? ALSO, AVOID SENDING LARGE EMAIL ATTACHMENTS.
  16. 16. 8 USE SOCIAL MEDIA
  17. 17. 8 USE SOCIAL MEDIA THE NEWS INDUSTRY HAS SHIFTED TO WHERE THE LATEST BREAKING INFORMATION IS FOUND FIRST ONLINE. ALMOST EVERY REPORTER THESE DAYS CAN BE FOUND ON TWITTER AND THEY ACTUALLY OFTEN PREFER YOU CONTACT THEM THERE INSTEAD OF VIA EMAIL… JUST BE SURE TO DIRECT MESSAGE THEM SO THEIR COMPETITION DOESN'T CATCH WIND OF YOUR PITCH!
  18. 18. 9 DO NOT CALL
  19. 19. 9 DO NOT CALL REPORTERS ARE RARELY AT THEIR DESKS. IF THEY HAPPEN TO BE THERE THEY USUALLY ARE FRANTICALLY WORKING ON SOMETHING AND PHONE CALLS INTERRUPT THEIR WORKFLOW. UNLESS THEY ASKED YOU TO CALL OR YOU ALREADY HAVE A PRIOR RELATIONSHIP WITH THEM, CALLING CAN PUT YOUR PITCH AT PERIL.
  20. 20. 10
  21. 21. 10 REPORTERS HAVE HECTIC JOBS THAT PULL THEM EVERY WHICH WAY SO IT'S EASY TO HAVE YOUR EMAIL SLIP THEIR MIND. IF YOU PITCHED A STORY AND HAVEN'T HEARD BACK FROM THEM IN A FEW DAYS, FOLLOW UP WITH A CORDIAL EMAIL TO REMIND THEM. IF YOU STILL DON'T HEAR BACK CONSIDER YOUR PITCH DECLINED.
  22. 22. RECAP 10 Best Practices For Pitching The Media 1) Why Does Your News Matter? 2) Know The Audience 3) Flesh It Out 4) Check The Calendar 5) Be Concise 6) Drop Big Names 7) Customize Your Pitches 8) Use Social Media 9) Do Not Call 10) Follow Up 10 tip sugge s by the sted ne media ws
  23. 23. THANK YOU TO THE MEDIA PROFESSIONALS BELOW FOR THEIR CONTRIBUTIONS.
  24. 24. HOW YOUR BUSINESS CAN MAKE THE NEWS 10 Best Practices For Pitching The Media @herofarm hero-farm.com facebook.com/herofarm signal@hero-farm.com

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