I was a TV news producer before becoming one of Media Relations Agency’s top publicists. I am proud of my strong relationships with reporters and producers. They trust me to bring them quality stories. It’s particularly satisfying when I can get our clients positioned in stories when I know the media was also considering featuring their competition. Often, it’s a combination of factors that give me the advantage when arranging press coverage.
Being performance-based gives us a huge incentive
With our Pay Per Interview® pricing model, our clients only pay us for results. They don’t pay us to try. Because we guarantee that our clients will get press coverage for their money, I must be at the top of my game each time I contact the media.
This also gives me perspective on why other businesses are not securing all the press coverage they may deserve. Here are my top 10 reasons why this might be happening to you:
- You’re not thinking like a journalist. A good publicist helps journalists do their jobs. We are a resource for information that’s of value to the media’s audiences. If you contact a reporter about a story that she wouldn’t usually cover, or that isn’t relevant to her audience, it can make a poor first impression. Know who you are contacting! In addition to the media relationships I’ve personally nurtured over the years, I routinely access Media Relations Agency’s proprietary database of media contacts.
- You’re not maximizing your competitive advantage. Experienced marketing strategists know how to insert their clients into pertinent conversations. It’s essential to spot any gaps in your messaging and fill them with mediagenic content. A good exercise is to work on your brand statement.
- You don’t have fresh content on your website. You’d better believe the media will check out your site before agreeing to run a story about you. What will they find? Is your content is consistent with the messaging you just pitched? Will you be on the first page of the search results? Consistently adding fresh content will help improve your rankings.
- You’re not extending the life of your previous media placements. Posting your press coverage on your website further establishes your credibility. These stories are authoritative, engaging references for your product’s quality. Reporters are impressed when they find a content library that includes other media articles and interviews.
- Your pitch is too long or not newsworthy. Press releases and pitches fail for a number of reasons. If you can’t tell your story in one or two pages, reporters may question whether you really understand its value to their audiences.
- You waited too long. The media’s lead times vary. If your story is tied to a specific season, event or holiday, you will probably need to start pitching it months in advance. For example, each summer, we start working on Christmas and New Year’s PR campaigns.
- Your story was incomplete. Reporters receive hundreds, if not thousands, of press releases and pitches each year. There’s a huge advantage to providing journalists with a complete story versus just teasing a story. Our marketing team compiles an extensive toolkit, filled with photos and background information. When a journalist asks for something, I am ready to supply it.
- Your story wasn’t compelling. Anyone reading your release should know “what’s the news” before finishing the first paragraph. If your story is more of a background piece or it’s too trivial, it won’t pass muster. Our writers produce Media Grade Content® which would pass the media’s strict litmus test for quality stories.
- You’re not using an editorial calendar. Earning media coverage is rarely something that happens overnight. You need to build interest over the long term. An editorial calendar will help you stay on point and enable you to pay careful attention to such variables as which products will receive the most promotional (and budgetary) attention, what messaging you want to communicate and through which channels. These free SAM 6® tools are great for keeping you organized.
- You’re relying only on the media to grow your business. Reporters pay attention to any buzz you might be creating in your community. As you cultivate relationships with these journalists, remember to also look for other ways to become a trusted source. These may include taking advantage of speaking opportunities or delivering guest lectures, writing white papers or books, and involving your company in volunteer efforts. We all prefer to do business with people who make us feel good. Reporters are no different.
There are a lot of variables to successfully arranging press coverage. And unless you do this full time, managing these details may not always be your top priority. If you make the media wait, you may essentially be delivering an interview opportunity to your competition.
Let’s talk about how we can relieve your stress by managing all aspects of your PR campaign.
Call us at 952-697-5269 or complete our contact form.