PRing one’s self 23 September 2008Posted by Catriona Pollard in PR tips.
Tags: PR tips
Last Sunday I closed my eyes and asked my friend to look at page 37 of Sunday Life to see if I looked half decent. After a “you look great”, I opened them and I saw my image taking up most of the page (Click here catriona to see PDF). Thankfully I looked half decent as I would have been very upset that the 100,000 odd people reading Sunday Life around NSW & Vic wondering why this PR chic was PRing herself.
I received many texts, emails and calls from friends, family about it. One associate emailed commenting about “PRing one’s self” and “Interesting to note you are doing PR on yourself”. I guess when you are in PR you have to do your own PR!
But it got me thinking. Many businesses can afford to use a PR consultancy – and trust me – it really does make a difference and is worth the money. But many businesses don’t have the budget and need to do it themselves.
One such business is my Women in Business mentoree – Gail Rast. Her business, Life’s a Feast is still evolving so she has been “PRing one’s self”. She has written a media release and was featured in her local newspaper with her contact details. She got a call from it.
She was also featured in the Sun Herald which is now proudly featured on her home page. So she is getting double PR from it.
So where do you start with “PRing one’s self”?
Media releases are a great way of distributing relevant and topical information to a group of targeted publications (think about which media outlets your target audience get their information from). The release must be newsworthy and cover the “who, what, where, why and when”.
Case studies provide an ideal platform to leverage business success and tell your story to the media through your customers. Many trade publications publish case studies and you can use them as testimonials when speaking to journalists.
Pitching is where you contact specific media outlets to offer them either an exclusive story or an opportunity that is more specific than a media release topic. You can pitch via email or phone, however before contact develop a clear outline of your story and ensure it is succinct and compelling.
Special features are published in most printed media and cover specific topics relevant to readership. They are an excellent avenue for reaching a specific audience. Contact the feature editor or the journalist in charge to see what angles, topics and issues they wish to cover and then develop a story, case study, or offer comment. Be proactive and contact features editors well in advance of publishing deadlines, as often they are pre-printed.
Write an article that positions you as an industry expert and offers topical, helpful information. Ensure it is written in an objective, informative and entertaining manner. It should never be a blatant advertisement or advertorial. Determine which publications your potential clients read, and approach editors focusing on what you can do for their readers. This is an effective way to generate future requests for comments from journalists as it positions you as an industry expert.
5 Tips for Great Story Angles 24 September 2007Posted by Catriona Pollard in PR tips.
Tags: copywriting, PR, PR tips, story angles, story ideas
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1. Brainstorm using the newspaper or trade journal.
Get into the habit of reading your paper with a notebook and pen in hand. Scan the headlines of each section and ask yourself, “What is in the news today that ties in with what I want to promote?”
2. Use surveys to craft solid story ideas
The media views quantitative data as newsworthy, accurate, and sidebar-friendly. Launch a survey, or piggyback on survey results that relate to your industry to create a strong story.
3. Listen to questions your clients and customers ask you
Are you suddenly hearing lots of people asking the same question? A trend may be starting that you can tie into.
4. Read trade publications to spot industry trends
What is the buzz in your trade publications? What are new developments in your field? Use your access to this information to shape a story.
5. Find story ideas in the course of your daily routine
Keep a notebook and pay attention to story-worthy events that pop up in the course of your day. You’ll be surprised at how many arise.