No matter if you have a big launch coming, or just continued solid service, it’s never too soon to start letting people know… Here are four proven yet unconventional ways small businesses can garner press coverage…
1. Focus on Editorial Calendars
When you get press, it serves your business — but sometimes its easier to get your foot in the door when you focus on how you can help out the media outlet. Many publications plan themes well in advance and can offer an editorial calendar. For a local TV station, this could include events they plan to cover, while a monthly magazine might have seasonal themes. Once you’ve identified what they will be working on, see where your business can fit in and bring value — either through offering an expert point of view on a topic or by providing sources.
Local businesses can take advantage of local events that will garner media coverage by just attending. Trade shows, charity events are all possibilities — and photos can continue to build your image through blog posts, sharing on social media or to customers and partners.
Do not hesitate to ask for Press calendars, almost all media do have a yearly plan.
2. Do Good Deeds
One move that will endear you to both the media and the public is, of course, goodwill. Whether it’s a large donation from a tech company or sponsoring a local organization, the possible media coverage can bring light to the other things your business is working on.
The event itself is newsworthy and builds on a previous relationship the company had built with a local reporter. Even with less resources, it’s still possible to express your company’s values.
3. Get Other Press
The most interesting thing about press outreach is that it isn’t ever just a one-time sprint.
Press coverage can snowball into more press coverage, so instead of going after your industry’s leading publication, consider pitching smaller blogs or local news. People who work in media do read their competitors and may be looking for a source — if they see you featured in a story, they can assume you’re accessible and may reach out.
4. Create Your Own Content
Becoming a thought leader on a topic can lead to expert interviews with press down the road. So, if you want to get media coverage, you need to have something to say that others will want to hear.
Why PR? Ok, some clients come to me and are saying: Because it’s free advertising!
So, if you believe that … , here are some specific advantages of getting this free advertising via media coverage:
- Exposure – People who haven’t heard about your business will hear about you
- Increased recall – The more often a person hears about you, the more easily they can recall the name of your business in the future i.e. when talking with friends.
- Temporary boost in website traffic, searches, social media shares – Temporary because what’s news today is pushed off the “front page” tomorrow.
- Sales boost – Even if you get bad press, you can still see an increase in sales. I’ll talk more later about “bad” press…
- More press – Getting published in one place often leads to interest from other journalists and bloggers. I call this a the “media echo effect.”
- Boost in search rankings – If you’re published on one or more media websites with authority in the eyes of Google, your overall search rankings will increase.
- Miscellaneous opportunities – Others in business will often reach out to you with partnership or joint marketing offers after they read about you.
So try to get media coverage with a specialist, it is a must for many reasons, …believe in PR !
More info: Metaphore agency