Whether you’re looking to raise your public profile, or hoping to get the word out about your next event, media coverage is one of the best ways to get your company noticed.
Unfortunately though, obtaining media coverage isn’t a simple matter of firing off pitches and hoping for the best. Many TV stations, newspapers and news websites have undergone dramatic staffing cuts in the last decade. This makes them more selective in deciding what events get covered with limited resources.
Ever wonder why some events and press conferences make it on the news, but yours doesn’t? Would you like for your next event to have the greatest chance of appearing on local TV news or in the newspaper?
Read on to find out how to ensure your next event will get the media attention and the publicity it deserves.
1. Ensure your event announcement gets noticed.
Sending an effective event announcement to the local media is not as simple as it sounds. You want to make sure your announcement will produce the effect you want – get media attention and make them come to your event.
To do so, check the guidelines below:
- Give it a catchy headline.
- Always date your announcement.
- Keep it short and straight to the point.
- Include the 5Ws: What is the event? When is it taking place? Where is it being held? Why is it being held? Who is organizing it?
- Include a contact name, telephone number and e-mail on your event announcement.
- Don’t leave your announcement until the last minute.
- Make a follow-up calls to all the media to confirm your announcement was received.
2. Make a relationship-based approach to journalists BEFORE you need them.
By pitching to journalists, you’re essentially asking them for a favor – to cover your company or event. Before you start pitching to them, it’s important to engage with them ahead of time.
Ideally, you should start connecting with them long before you need them, and at the very least, two months before you pitch.
Successful media outreach is all about relationships. Your best chance of coverage will hinge directly upon your relationship with the journalists in question. Since you know them, it will help you to pitch news that they’re actually interested in. And since they know you, they’ll be more inclined to read your pitch.
Start by creating a media contacts database and pop them an introductory email where you introduce yourself, what you do and highlight the areas that they might be interested in. Make sure to do your homework first, and research on topics they mostly write or report about, then adjust your “pitch” to each one of them.
3. Deliver broadcast-ready material to news outlets.
Now let’s assume you built a relationship with key journalists, delivered an impeccable event announcement but when you made follow-up calls to media to check who’s going to actually attend your event, you’re hearing stories like: “We don’t have the staff to make it or we are working a breaking news story and can’t come to your event.”
One way to increase your chances of getting your event in the news, and eliminating the guesswork is to have a video producer shoot your next event just as the TV stations would.
News producers and editors love having video to go along with the story, and by having it delivered to their inbox without them having to send their own staff greatly increases the odds your story makes it in the news.
Now we have the scenario where you send an email to the news outlets with a high-quality event video, script and press release – as opposed to giving them more work. You saved their time and did all the work for them, and this way, you’re not only increasing your chances to be featured but you’re also nurturing your relationships with the media.
Successful media coverage isn’t landing a one-time feature; it’s about finding a way to facilitate continual coverage for your company and events. This is where all of those relationships that you’ve been building and nurturing with the media will come full circle. Since they’ve featured you once, they’ll be more likely to cover you again in the future.
Need help to shoot for your next event?
If you need help to shoot your next event, let us know! Our team has 55 years of broadcast television experience and aside from shooting, we can take over direct communication with news outlets for you.
Contact us today at (727) 483-0348 to schedule us to come to your next event or press conference.