4 Tips for Strong Media Relations

Media-RelationsAt a time when information sharing is constant and news stories have extremely short lifespans, learning how to work with the media is essential to promoting your company. Here are four tips to help you create and maintain strong media relations:

 1. It’s all about sales: Sell the media on what is newsworthy about your company.

In sales, we focus on the benefits of purchasing a product instead of a product’s features.

The same rules apply to pitching the media. A journalist wants to know what is newsworthy about your pitch, which will benefit them by attracting readers. Make sure you focus on what is different or unique about your pitch and how the story could benefit the journalist.

2. Keep up with the journalists in your circle:  Consistently read, watch or listen to the journalists you routinely work with.

Commenting on a recent story can give you something to talk about, which makes for a great icebreaker. Doing so demonstrates that you have an interest in his or her work, and that you care about more than your own agenda. The media value consideration.

Also, it will keep you from pitching a story that he or she has already written or would never write. If the journalist is someone you hope to pitch down the road, learning his or her personal style will help you tailor your pitch to his or her needs.

3. Be personal: Take the time to establish a relationship with members of the media.

Figure out how a journalist likes to be contacted and at what times during the day. Journalists have hectic schedules between deadlines, so learning his or her preferences will minimize stress for both of you.

Also, don’t forget how many pitches journalists receive each day. If you take the time to personalize a pitch to a journalist’s style or interests, your story is more likely to be written and you’ll be more likely to resonate with them for future pitches.

4. Keep it simple: A pitch should be brief and to the point.

Pitching your idea should be about quality, not quantity, so news releases should be about a page in length. Email is best for releases, and including links to websites is a good tactic. Avoid using snail mail, which is both environmentally unfriendly and irrelevant, and do not send materials like books and pamphlets unless they are requested.

(Photo credit: http://www.chrisnorton.biz/wp-content/uploads/2009/09/Media-Relations.jpg)





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