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Media relations is the bread and butter of a successful PR campaign, and whether you have a brand-new product or service to launch or need to generate some positive coverage on something that already exists in your portfolio, you need to make sure you have a media pitch that is on point and cuts through the noise. On this week’s podcast, we cover all you need to know about the good, the bad and the ugly of PR campaigns or read on for some top tips!
To maximise your chances of coverage you need to make sure you are reaching the right media for your audience, and you have created the ultimate media package. This means giving the journalist everything they need right off the cuff, so they can run with your story with minimal further input.
So where do you start?
- Tailor that list
You are likely to have your core media list for your brand, but it is important that you revisit this list for every new pitch. Take the time to look at your key titles and see who is writing about similar brands – and don’t forget to check out a journalist’s social media channels too, for extra insight.
Once you have identified the titles and journalists that write about relevant topics, try not to take the scatter gun approach with your pitch – take the time to tailor content to suit each title and journalist. Mention any relevant articles they have written recently and outline why you think your pitch is of particular interest to them and crucially, their readership.
- Get hooked
The question you will commonly hear from the media: what’s the hook? In other words, what makes your pitch timely? Is it key to the season? Is it related to a current trend? Is there something on the current news agenda that it is linked to? Even better, if you have any punchy facts and figures that you can offer that supports your pitch, it can give it an even stronger news hook and make it much more likely to be covered.
- Prized assets
We all know that a picture is worth a thousand words! You should be able to offer the media a selection of high resolution images that are a good mix of product and lifestyle shots. Some media will want cut-out shots to lay out onto a page, some will want to see lifestyle images of the product or service in action (if applicable).
Most online media are also very welcoming of video content, as long as it fits in with their editorial policies (so nothing that just plays as a sales video). If you have any advice pieces, or interviews with ambassadors or case studies that are good to go, offer these to your relevant media and the likelihood is that they will bite your hand off.
If you are pitching to TV, make sure you have something interesting for them to film that is more than just an interview with a spokesperson. Are you holding a special event? Is there an activity that the presenter can get involved with? If you think of the best on-location pieces you have seen on the news, there is usually some ‘action’ alongside the interview to camera.
- Real life stories
Have you got a case study that can demonstrate the value of your brand/product and brings the story to life? Has your product or service solved a problem for someone? It’s no secret that third party endorsement is worth it’s weight in gold (which is why earned media is so valuable), and media know that their audience want to hear from real people and not just the brand. It’s even better if you have several case studies that you can offer exclusively to different titles, who are relevant to their audience and demographic.
- The expert
You may already have a drafted quote from your brand’s spokesperson for print and online titles, but it’s good practice to have them on standby for any interviews, where media may want more information or to have a quote or access to an interviewee that will be unique to them. If you know your spokesperson has very limited time for interviews, find out what days and times are best and make sure you communicate this in your pitch, to manage the expectations of the journalist.
If you’re not sure where to start, listen to Episode 5 from Season 1 of our podcast, Revitalise & Grow, which is all about media relations and Episode 9 from Season 4, covers the good, the bad and the ugly when it comes to PR campaigns!