“There is only one thing in life worse than being talked about, and that is not being talked about” â€“ Oscar Wilde
In this day and age, it’s not enough to simply have a website for your business. If you want to raise the profile of your business and reach new audiences, you need to consider other avenues, such as social media and publicity.
Contrary to popular belief, most journalists will not publish your press release word-for-word. If you are looking for an exact message to be placed in a newspaper, radio program or online, then you should consider advertising instead.
However, if you are open to the message being included in a larger story, or re-interpreted by a journalist, then publicity is a far more cost-effective option. An article about your business will be remember far longer than an ad, reach a wider audience and instil greater credibility in your brand.
When trying to raise the profile of your business in the media, it’s worth considering these five tips:
1) Identify what’s newsworthy
If you’re looking to secure news coverage on your business, you need to identify a â€˜newsworthy’ angle. Your product may be high-quality or great value, but that doesn’t necessarily make it newsworthy. Consider news values such as uniqueness, timeliness and proximity. What makes your product unique or interesting? Is it the first of its kind in Australia? Does it do something that other products don’t? Does it solve a unique problem? Alternatively, has your business recently achieved a big milestone or won an award? Does your business support a local charity? It’s integral to identify an angle that will appeal to the masses, otherwise a journalist will not publish your story.
2) Do your research
If you’re looking to get coverage, your best chance of success is to find a publication that focuses on your industry. Others in your industry are likely to be interested if you’re doing something unique or new. Local newspapers are also worth contacting, as they often run regular business columns or might profile local business owners. If you’ve read articles about other businesses online or in a newspaper or magazine, they might be interested in your business too, so don’t be afraid to reach out.
3) Build relationships
Once you’ve decided which publications to target, get in touch with key journalists. At a minimum, there should be an email address and phone number on the publication’s website for the news desk. Most editors and journalists receive hundreds of emails a week, so you’re better off calling first, then emailing the information through after. If a journalist has the time, it’s worth discussing with them the kind of stories they like to cover. This will help you when pitching future angles.
4) Be realistic
You shouldn’t expect a journalist to write a story on your business the first time you get in touch with them. It can take time to build a relationship and, of course, your story angle needs to be strong. It’s also worth contacting multiple journalists about your story to improve your chances of getting published. If a journalist gives you feedback about why they’re not interested in a story, take it on board to improve future stories. Persistence is key, so don’t be discouraged if your first few attempts are unsuccessful!
5) Get sharing
Once you’ve secured some media coverage, make sure to let everyone know! Share links to any online news coverage on your social media accounts or post a status about where people can read about your business in a print magazine or newspaper. It’s also worth sending a quick â€˜thank you’ email to the journalist that published the article to show your appreciation and maintain the relationship for next time.
It can be a lot of work to increase the profile of your business, but once you do, the results are well worth it. Before you know it, journalists will be calling YOU for comment!
Another option is to hire a public relations agency, which specialises in identifying newsworthy angles and has pre-existing relationships with key journalists.
If you’re looking for more information about what Cole Lawson can do to raise the profile of your business, click here, or contact us at (07) 3221 2220.