A key component of a successful public relations strategy is media relations. Whether you are promoting a company, new product, new service, a book, or movie, the best way to get the word out and reach your target audience is through the media. To be effective the media coverage must be strategic in reaching your target market.
Here are some tips on how to get successful media coverage and to see results.
- Know your audience. This cannot be stressed enough. It doesn’t matter if you are promoting a romance novel or the latest toy for Christmas, you need to know who you will be targeting through your media appearances and what media that audience relies on. You are using the media to generate interest in what you are promoting, that is why you need to make sure that you are reaching the right media. Define your audience and the media that caters to that audience.
- Be creative in reaching out to the media. The members of the news media receive thousands of pitches per day. The key is being creative in your approach to the media, showing how what you are promoting is unique, and why they should want to cover it.
- Keep current with the news. The media loves to quote experts who can lend credibility to the story. For example, if you are a lawyer who represents law enforcement officers, you are ideal for stories about police shootings. The mention of your name and practice is free advertising through the interview and provides the third-party endorsement of the media outlet that interviewed you. Or if you are a psychologist pay attention to stories that you might be able to be quoted in, such as dealing with stress during the holidays. Or if you are a food company, weave into stories about holiday foods, or ideal foods for the summer. If you are a financial planner follow financial stories that you can position yourself into with your expertise. Knowing what is current in the news allows you to jump in and position yourself as an expert while a topic is hot.
- Think like a reporter or producer. No, we are not suggesting to go to journalism school. What we mean is when you are thinking about approaching a reporter or producer about your product, service, or book, think as they would. They would be thinking why is this newsworthy; what expertise does the person have on this topic; what are the 3 key points that people will be interested in; and is this something timely. Having explanations for all of these questions will go a long way in securing the interview.
Media interviews allow you to reach a large target audience in a cost-efficient way. Having a plan and following it when approaching the media will ensure that you see the results that you are desiring.