Media outlets constantly search for stories and people who will captivate the attention of their audiences. What this means for you and your organization is that today is the best time to reach out and earn your share of the millions in free publicity that is available every single day.
How do you impress the media and stick out in a sea of wannabes?
First and foremost, don’t waste their valuable time. Virtually, every media outlet is operating with fewer staff than they had last year. This means that they still have the same pressing deadlines and space to fill but they don’t have enough staff to do it.
If you want your pitch to stand out amongst the thousands that hit their inbox today – it has to be memorable, relevant and thorough.
Here are my TOP 4 Tips to guarantee you attract attention no matter what product or service you are selling.
1. Be Newsworthy. You can never hope to “make the news” if you have no idea what is going on in the news. The media is not interested in your product or service. What they are interested in are celebrities, politicians, sports stars, scandals, natural disasters and other headline news. If you want to be featured, you need to make what you do relevant in the context of what is happening today in the news. Tie what you do to someone or something that is newsworthy and you will become the go-to-expert for top shows, magazines and newspapers.
2. Tailor Your Story. If you don’t read a particular publication or follow a show, chances are that it will be almost impossible for you to hit the target with the editor or producer. They get thousands of pitches every day – if it doesn’t fit squarely within what they do, they will simply toss it in the garbage. It is better to send out 2 custom pitches a day that are carefully crafted than 100 generic emails or faxes that are too broad to appeal to anyone.
3. Create your own news. The other day I got a call from a national news organization who read my pitch that 1/3 of the population suffers from insomnia. They immediately wanted to interview me. Now, insomnia has been around since the beginning of time. Why did it become a pressing national news story on Tuesday at 9am in Melbourne? 1/3 of the general population is a lot of people. If something affects a lot of people, it becomes newsworthy. The trick to garnering media attention is to take some aspect of what you do and make it tangible and real (as a problem) to the lives of many.
4. Follow the story and add to it. If you watch carefully you will notice that the media tends to follow a hot story for an extended period of time. Take for example Claire Werbeloff, the chick-chick-boom girl, who became a Youtube sensation around the world for lying about the events leading up to a Kings Cross murder. Even though she had no talent, connection to the crime or evidence, we were forced to endure more than 4 weeks of national coverage on her (not the crime). She eventually went on to be featured in Ralph magazine and was offered work with Channel 9. To emulate this you need to track the pulse of hot news stories and be on the lookout for opportunities to enhance the coverage by contributing insights and expert commentary. When it comes to breaking news, the media is on the look-out for related subjects which add to the story or new angles that are fresh and captivating.
Media outlets capture eyeballs with news and they are not in the business of selling your products or services. By following the news and becoming newsworthy, you will increase your chances exponentially of being picked up and featured.
The good news is that media outlets are constantly searching for stories and people who will capture and captivate the attention of their audiences. What this means for you and your organization is that right now (TODAY) is the best time for you to reach out and earn some of the millions of dollars of free publicity that is available every day.
Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/3142180
07 Aug 2011
5 Clues That Your Press Release Sucks
Right now you are probably asking yourself “how does she know that?”.
I haven’t even seen any of your press releases… and that’s OK, I don’t need to. I already know the answer. Trust me!
First of your press release is WAY too long…
Second, you don’t have any bullets in them. Media people have the attention spans of mosquitoes and you need to feed your story idea to them in a press release with 30 second sound bites.
Third, no one cares about your product, service, company or book. You need to react to what is in the news today! You aren’t doing that, are you? How does what you have to sell relate to the latest sports scandal, celebrity melt down, internet scam or politician who has accepted a free flight on Qantas? Does your press release fix a major problem that listeners/readers have today?
Fourth, no one is reading your press release because you are mailing or faxing them out in bulk and not following up. You need to electronically send them out to several places (both local media and big online services like prlog.com) and follow them up with an actual phone call.
Finally, make sure you turn your press release into an article and send them out to Ezine release companies, post them on your blog, mention them on social media (Twitter, Facebook, G+, LinkedIn, Pinterest) and include them in your Enewsletter blast to your database. Remember, you will be lucky if you receive a response to your first press release. The key is to be short, sharp, newsworthy, interesting and persistent. Relevancy, follow up and persistence are the 3 keys to your success.
Stay tuned for my next installment where I am going to show you how to write a $10m Press Release!