Media outlets can be invaluable allies in spreading the word about your business, but how do you get them interested in your message? Here are five approaches you can take.
Making publicity a top priority for your business is a great step toward increasing awareness of your brand. Now that you've made the commitment, what's next? Getting on the same page as the media about what a good story idea involving your company looks like can be trickier than you think. Developing an effective pitch is key to avoiding the dreaded "delete" button.
Still stuck? Here are five ideas to help you put your pitch plan into motion.
1. Establish your expertise.
You've worked long and hard to create your business. You know your service or product inside and out, and that makes you an expert. Think about the industry in which you specialize and find ways to offer up insight to the media as a resource. For instance, if you sell toys, you may want to pitch your knowledge on the best toys for various ages or offer up the must-haves for the holiday season. Or perhaps you have important new insight on the safest toys on the market. Tap into your wealth of knowledge.
2. Offer insight on current trends.
What's new in your industry, and how will it affect the public? When it comes to creating a timely news hook, it's not just about your company, but what else is happening in the overall space in which you operate. For example, the founder of a finance company can share their expertise around the latest in cryptocurrency. A recruiter or business consultant can weigh in on seasonal jobs. Think outside your own business to timely stories that are relevant now.
3. Share your research.
Data, data and more data – reporters love statistics stemming from business research and consumer surveys. Companies often have internal data around consumer preferences and behaviors that can be generalized and shared – and attributed back. For example, a travel company might have insight into how often travelers deal with layovers. An educational software business might have researched what percentage of teachers rely on technology. If your company doesn't have internal date, surveying your customers on a particular topic might help create it.
4. Tell your story.
Beyond the business, there's a personal story. That human-interest element is often enough to capture a journalist's attention. Think about the challenges you've overcome while growing your business and what lessons you took from them. Tell the story of how and why you created the business in the first place – what was the personal inspiration to take it to market?
5. Highlight your milestones.
Timeliness is everything in PR. Perhaps you are approaching a milestone – such as the 10-year anniversary of your company or taking your product from regional to national distribution. Those kinds of accomplishments can be ideal hooks to land media coverage. If you're not quite there yet, tap into holidays, national recognition days (e.g., Mother's Day) or events that tie in to what you do. For example, an accountant can provide the latest in filing tips during tax season. Did you know there's a National Chocolate Day? Great for a candy company. Look for ways to capitalize on the right timing.
The right pitch at the right time can make all the difference in securing great media coverage. Once you know which media outlets are ideal to feature your business, get the ball rolling by finding the best angle for their audience. Effective PR is more art than science, but these strategies can provide a formula to get the wheels moving. Happy pitching!