Created 8th February 2013
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PR coverage – getting you in the news
How many times have you read the local newspaper only to discover your business competitor once again getting PR coverage, announcing the benefits of their latest new product or commenting on the state of the economy? Annoying isn’t it, but it is not rocket science; it could be you. The company has shared something with the media in the proper format delivered to the right editors and journalists. I bet they also have a good dialogue with the media and are always available to comment or interview.
In essence these types of businesses value the power of media relations and many SMEs build their entire public relations (PR) plan around publicity. PR is a multi-faceted discipline but for many companies, they are too small to gain any value from corporate or other marketing channels and choose to stick to one medium that gets them in the news.
How do you get PR coverage?
So where do you begin? Fundamentally, you need to determine what is newsworthy about your company and identify who would be interested in this news. While this may sound easy, this is often the reason many stories fail to make the headlines. Many people have trouble being objective about what is and isn’t newsworthy in their company. Just because it makes the company newsletter does not mean it is of interest to anyone outside the business. The best way to determine the quality of your story is to imagine you don’t work at the company and put yourself in the shoes of an editor or your proposed reader: is this information appealing to you? If the answer is no, then it is likely it is not for general consumption. Key words associated to your story like ‘award winning’, ‘first ever’ or ‘significant impact on the local community’ or ‘national recognition’, confirm a newsworthy piece.
Sometimes out of the box creative thinking is required to produce something newsworthy and often this is where it is worth consulting a PR agency to hammer this out for you. With the angle confirmed you then need to think about which media will best communicate to your target audience – is it a local story or a more specialist sector story? It is wise then to look at the style of those publications and reflect that in the news article you prepare. As a general rule press releases should be short, succinct and contain only factual information with supporting statistics where possible and a quote from the company spokesperson. The headline needs to catch the attention of the journalist and the whole premise of the story must be communicated through the ‘who, why, what, when and how’ rule in the first two paragraphs. Journalists receive hundreds of these types of press releases each day and unless they can quickly grasp the suitability of the story it will be discarded.
Do your homework, conduct some research and if you need a hand give us a call. We have the experience and relationships with local, regional and national media.
Call our PR consultants in Somerset and Devon to get your story in the public domain. Call 0845 2606 255 and ask for Katie or Steve.