Media relations refers to the relationship a brand develops with journalists or influencers. Although the media landscape continues to shift, media relations remains an important aspect of any public relations strategy. Traditionally, media outlets consisted of TV, radio, and print, but now, media has expanded to include more digital channels.
When executed properly, media relations can influence every aspect of your digital marketing strategy. It plays a complementary role to content marketing efforts, helping to increase brand awareness and educate the public. Media relations can also have a significant effect on your SEO strategy, driving traffic to your website and maintaining authority. Finally, third-party articles make for perfect social media content and help to amplify your messaging.
Let’s be honest, getting media coverage is hard – but necessary. So, we’ve compiled a few tips and tricks that can help you garner more attention.
What’s Your Angle?
You only have a matter of seconds to grab a journalist’s attention before you’re ignored, spammed, or deleted. Off the top, it’s important to highlight what’s newsworthy or unique about your story.
Do your research to identify and present the right media angle for each outlet. In fact, it doesn’t hurt to prepare several angles – if your first approach doesn’t resonate, try a different story angle.
E-mail, Call Only If You Must
Trust us, there’s a reason why the ‘Contact Us’ page is so hard to find on a media site. Journalists and influencers would much rather be contacted by e-mail. So, unless you’ve been invited to have a phone conversation, call only if you must.
Short & To the Point
Keep it simple. The optimal length of a pitch is anywhere from 100-150 words, or three short paragraphs. You don’t want to give away too much information at once — pique their interest and have them come back for more.
Personalize Your Pitch
Do your research. Target journalists who have covered similar stories and ensure that their beat hasn’t changed. Familiarize yourself with their news coverage, follow them on social media and align your story with their interests. Use your findings to give your pitch a personal note, which shows you’ve taken the time to get to know them as a person.
At the end of the day, a significant part of public relations is creating and maintaining relationships that add value to all involved.
There’s a fine line between being politely persistent and pushy. We like to wait about a week before we reach back out to the media following a pitch. Your follow-up is a good opportunity to provide a bit more information and attach a press release.