You want to raise your profile, tell your story or get your new amazing product in front of your target market. You believe you've got a great angle, you've written a press release and you know what you have to offer is awesome but, no matter how much you try journalists aren't answering your emails or returning your calls and you're definitely not making headlines of any kind, but why?
Cuts in journalism in recent years mean that often a reporter can be working across a few publications so their time is limited. Here are a few tips on what journalists look for when you approach them
Keep it concise
If you're sending out a press release or a pitch keep it short and sweet. Hopefully you can say what you need to say in two pages or less (for a release) and what you send needs to answer the questions who, what where, why, when and how? Plus a bit more detail and a good quote relating to the story.
Make it relevant
Is the one year, five year, ten year anniversary of your business news? Do the people reading the publication want to know about it? Sadly very often the answer is no but that doesn't mean you should write of your chances of getting the story out there. You can still use your story but it may be more suitable for your blog and social media channels. For the press the same piece of news can still make it but it may be a case of needing to have a think about a new angle or hook. A Discovery Call with me can help with this.
No big files
Put the press release in the body of the email rather than as an attachment, so it is easy for them to read and enables them to just cut and paste the bits of the story they want to use. Also if you're sending images (more on this in the next point) don't attach them, send them via a Dropbox link, WeTransfer or something similar. Massive files can clog up inboxes and/or get sent to junk.
Use good images
There is a reason the saying 'a picture paints a thousand words exists' and that's because it is true. A good image can make the difference as to whether your story makes it in or not. Firstly an image will support what you're saying, it draws the eye and also helps to fill the page.
If you're sending a story out make sure you're going to be around. Don't send it out a few days before you go on holiday or you know you've got a few days of back to back meetings. If the journalist is interested and wants more info you need to be able to give it to them quickly and efficiently. This won't only help you get that story in, it also lets the journalist know that you're reliable and will give them answers when they need them.
Know your business and industry
When the journalist calls wanting more information make sure you know your stuff. If something big is happening in your industry ensure that you are knowledgeable about it and are comfortable speaking about it.
Hopefully these tips will help you get your story out there and become the go to person for comment in your industry, local area, community or wherever you are targeting.