What is public relations?
• Free coverage in:
Library Media Reporters
• Local feature reporters = NLLD coverage,
policymaker library visits
• Education reporters = Schools and early
• Technology journalists = Innovative services,
ebooks, privacy issues
• Government/politics = Protecting library
This week: May 5-9, 2014
• Contact person/Date
• Statement Lead
• Link to more
Do’s and Don’ts
• Do select a spokesperson for your group before you release
• Do read the newspaper, magazine, TV show that you want to
pitch. Know the publication's target audience and their
• Do pitch your story to the appropriate reporter
• Do understand that everything is not newsworthy.
• Simplifying your language and avoiding the use of complex
or vague industry jargon.
• Do respond quickly to media inquiries and emails—their
time is of the essence.
• Don’t SPAM! Don’t call a journalist 20 minutes later to see if
they received your email. Send the release once, then follow
up when necessary. Never harass a reporter.
• Don’t sent paragraphs upon paragraphs of text-keep it
• Don’t tell a media reporter that you need to review a copy of
the story before it runs—everything is on the record!
• Don’t go on live TV if you have never practiced in front of a
• Don’t do a media interview if you are not prepared for
negative questions. Make the time to develop talking points
before every interview.
How to Pitch
“If the pitch is
relevant to me, it
works 100 percent
of the time.”
– Mitch Joel, digital
Three Summer Ideas
• Getting leaders through your library doors:
1. Invite them to an event that provides public
2. Invite them for a private library tour
3. Invite them to speak on a panel or forum
Steps to Getting an Editorial Meeting
• Conduct media research and find out the editorial
• Set objectives for your editorial meeting supporting
• Bring background materials fact sheets, statements,
past releases, names and numbers for contacts. Make
the case in a 2-3 minute opening statement, supported
by facts. Address opposition’s criticisms on the issue
summarize your position.
• Following the meeting send a thank you note to each
• Media templates available online
• “Cision Webinar Slides—10 Ways to Increase Your Media
Coverage. Cision. Jan 2014:
• “Getting to the Point.” Danielle McClelland, assistant
director, City of Dallas Public Information Office. April
• “Positioning Your Library as an Essential Service:
Marketing, PR and Advocacy.” United for Libraries. May
• “They’ve Got to See it to Believe It: Getting Decision
Makers Into Your Library.” ALA Washington Office
Webinar. July 2012: vimeo.com/46364776.
• “How to Make it Happen Colorado Association of
Libraries.” Colorado Association of Libraries. May 2013:
My contact information: Jazzy Wright,
press officer, ALA Washington Office.