Businesses love good publicity and some positive PR. A feel good boost in local Christchurch media informs people about the awesome work you’re doing, so they look more favourably on your company.
This doesn’t happen by accident. It’s the result of planning, targeting, and measuring so you make the biggest impact and the best result. If you’d like to raise the profile of your Christchurch business, Inform PR has four tips for success and pitfalls to avoid.
Have A Newsworthy Story
Even in Christchurch, journalists receive many media releases each day, so yours really has to stand out. Make sure whatever you’re doing is newsworthy enough to make them want to cover you.
Who is there for comment? Is someone famous involved? How many people will it affect? Are there photo opportunities for newspaper, magazines, social media and TV? Don't send out media releases for every little event in the hope one gets picked up. A quality story beats quantity any day.
Target Your Audience
Generally, you hunt better with a rifle than with a shotgun. Be deliberate in who you target and why. Research the reporter and their media outlet. What else have they written recently?
Knowing who you’re targeting allows you to craft a pitch that appeals to them and increases the chances of your story being picked up. Reporters are people too, and they need to know their time isn’t being wasted.
Avoid spamming like the plague. Unless you have the most newsworthy story ever, there is little excuse for sending out a bulk release. Individual releases show you’ve put some thought into it, and help journalists identify the angle that’s most relevant to them faster.
What Are You Saying?
Journalists should be able to get everything they need from the top line of your release. It must be a strong hook that encourages them to read further, pick up the phone to get extra comment and publish your story.
Use strong, active language that’s easy to read. Get to the point quickly. Only use jargon or industry talk if you’re targeting a journalist who specifically covers your sector and you’re confident they’ll know what you’re talking about. If you have any doubts, plain English is always best.
Be Prepared For A Response
Sometimes media releases come to nothing, especially if there has been a natural disaster or tragedy that day, but you must be prepared for the phone to ring. Many people avoid calls from private numbers, but what if it’s the news outlet you’ve been targeting and you miss a golden opportunity? Keep your phone handy and schedule flexible after sending out a release.
There’s also nothing wrong with a follow up phone call to the journalists you’re targeting. In this instance, it’s much better to have pitched to a specific journalist than a media organisation in general. You can complement them on a recent piece and build a relationship.
Offer something else, a new follow up angle to get them hooked or an exclusive interview. Please be exclusive with your exclusivity! Don’t promise a story to someone and share it around. That’s not a reputation you want to create.
If you get to know your local reporters, you will know who you can call and who won’t be interested. Don’t call and simply ask if they got your email.
Using these tips should increase the odds of your story being picked up, and not being sent straight to the junk folder. If you have an idea for a great story but aren’t sure who to target or where to start, contact the team at Inform PR for a free consultation.
If you're looking for ways to make your business stand out and get noticed, you've come to the right place!