Good PR is about relationships, not coverage. When executed correctly, PR can be one of the best and cheapest ways to publicize your brand. So how do you build a good relationship with the press? Our PR experts here at Design Thinking have put together the below golden rules for a company to follow in order to build a strong relationship with the media and maximize your chances of coverage.
- Make your list
Work out what audience you are interested in reaching. Is it the general public, the financial community, your peers, customers, etc.? Marketing personas can help identify influencers and relevant media that would best help you to achieve your PR goals. Once you’ve determined your audience, prioritize the list based on who is the most important. Work out which media will reach your target audiences and then trim the list so that you can actually communicate effectively with everyone who is on it.
- Figure out what they’re interested in
Some magazines have a clearly defined target audience while others talk to many different groups. It’s worth finding out what they’re interested in and tailoring your approach accordingly so that you don’t waste anyone’s time, including your own.
- Know their lead times
Many magazines and other outlets tend to plan two or three issues or months ahead. If you can give early warnings that allow your story to be newsworthy when the magazine actually does hit the shelves that is a great plus for you and the outlet.
- Ask about their current stories
Although editors are sometimes reluctant to outline their future stories, they will always have them in mind and may be talking to you about something that won’t get written for a couple of months. In discussion, be prepared to talk about different story ideas and be prepared to make imaginative leaps with a writer or editor as they test how your story might work in different articles.
- Appreciate the journalist
While some business’s find journalists annoying, they are actually doing your brand a favour. Or at least they think they are. If a journalist feels like they are being taken advantage of or their time is being wasted, they’ll find another source and another story. Be as responsive, cooperative and interesting as possible to get a story that positively reflects your brand.
- Time is money
When it comes to freelance writers you have to remember that their time is valuable. They get a fixed fee to do a story and the more time it takes, the less money they make. Although some staff reporters are on a salary, most are overworked and constantly looking towards deadlines. Therefore, it’s important to respect their time as you would an important prospective client or customer.
- Respect the deadlines
There’s nothing more useless than an interview after a copy deadline has passed and yet companies regularly don’t reply to calls or emails until weeks or even months after a journalist’s first contact. Very often deadlines are a matter of days, not weeks or months. As a result, you should treat any first contact as urgent and you should be clear about any deadlines as early in the discussion as possible.
- Use a PR expert
If you don’t know where to start when it comes to building a relationship with the media for your company reach out to a marketing company, such as Design Thinking, and we can help you in several ways including introducing you to media contacts, providing pictures, revising copy within your articles, writing press releases, coordinating opportunities and more.
If you’re ready to start building up your relationship with the media and getting more PR coverage, contact us today and bring your marketing game to a whole new level.