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Help a Reporter! Peter Shankman’s Holiday Publicity Tips

Your pumpkins are still on the front porch, the turkey is barely out of the oven and Christmas decorations are already up – it’s official: the holiday season is upon us. Is your business ready to attract customers in the forthcoming holiday rush?

HARO publicity alerts founder and Vocus small business expert Peter Shankman is an invaluable resource on marketing and publicity for businesses of all sizes. We caught up with him to ask for some tips on pitching reporters during the holidays.

Want more holiday publicity tips? Check out our Holiday Marketing Guides here.

What’s the top thing to remember when pitching to reporters, especially during the holidays?

More than any other time, the holidays are stressful. When you’re pitching reporters, remember that they want to be able to enjoy the holiday season as well.

The more you can give them in the quickest amount of time, the better off you’ll be. The less homework they have to do, the better. Give them information that gives them what they need to write about your product or services in five seconds.

How can a business sell its product in the pitch?

Do an incredibly good job selling your product in the email. You have to be a good seller to do this, and that comes down to being a good writer. Take a writing class if you must. Bad writing is destroying America and killing your business. Good writing will save you every time.

Are there any other creative ways for businesses to get in the news?

Come up with an idea, and fit your product into it. Do your homework so you’re helping the reporter do theirs. Suggest a story on the 30 Days of Christmas, with each day focusing on a new product or idea, and include yourself in one of the days. The more info you can give them for the complete story, the less they have to work and the more likely they are to include you.

And if there’s breaking news, find a way to tie it in. When Lindsay Lohan got busted for stealing a necklace, a jewelry store offered a “five finger” Lindsay discount. Stuff like that is awesome for getting in the news.

For more expertise from Peter and other marketing stars like Ann Handley in our Holiday Guides,click here. 

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