April 20, 2016
/ by Susan Guillory
A successful public relations pitch has the potential to elevate your brand in a way advertising simply can’t. When a reporter writes about you, it’s an unbiased look at your brand, whereas advertising is heavily slanted in your direction.
But a good pitch starts with finding the right reporters. There are thousands of them (and don’t overlook bloggers too!), and it’s worth your time to find the ones that cater to your audience.
Here are a few places to start your search.
Start at the source to find journalists that cover your industry. You probably are already reading magazines, newspaper columns, blog posts and websites that are good candidates to start with. Begin there and look at who’s regularly writing about topics relevant to your customer base.
Engagement Tip: Once you find them, get on their radars by commenting intelligently on their articles and sharing them.
Today’s reporters are social savvy, so the ones you want to reach may be active on Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn (or all of these). Keep an eye out because they’ll often tap their social networks for quotes, so if you’re in their network, you’ll get that rare access.
Engagement Tip: When you find reporters through source No. 1, immediately connect to them on several social sites. Sometimes their social media profiles are linked on their bio page, but other times you’ll have to do a little sleuthing on your own to find them.
While these fall under the social media category, they’re also a beast of their own. TweetChats are regular events where people interested in a particular topic gather on Twitter to discuss. They use a designated hashtag to organize.
Engagement Tip: Because many of these TweetChats are geared toward journalists and not brands, you don’t have to participate to reap the benefits. Find one that attracts journalists in your industry and follow them. This can open the door to other publications worth targeting that you might not have been aware of.
Don’t underestimate the power of IRL (in real life). We put a lot of attention on the digital world, but sometimes the best way to forge relationships is to meet journalists in person. That can happen at a trade show, conference or networking event targeting a particular niche.
Engagement Tip: Don’t attend an event with the single-minded focus of finding a journalist to write about you. It’s the start of a relationship you’ll need to nurture over time.
There are other places you can connect with journalists to start a relationship with them that can grow into media coverage, so always keep your eyes open!
Images via Pixabay: 1, 2
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