So you’ve written a press release for your small business and it’s not picking up any traction? The truth is that just sending out a press release does not guarantee any media coverage.If you’re sending a press release out to news desks and general editors, chances are, it’s getting lost in the shuffle. If your business has something newsworthy to share and you’ve taken the time to craft a press release, now is the time to optimize your announcement for greatest effect.
AdviCoach has assembled a guide on how your small business can more effectively leverage its press releases to see more media coverage at the local level.
Building a local media list:
- Take a look at local papers and magazines and research any reoccurring columns or business writers that have covered topics relevant to your business.
- If you are having trouble finding the right reporter, call the main line and ask the news desk who would be the right person to talk to for stories about your business.
- Once you’ve connected with the right reporter, share your expertise and offer yourself for interviews on any related topics. Always make sure to ask for their contact information so you can have it for the future.
- Save the reporter’s name, contact information and the publication they work in an Excel sheet for added convenience.
Sending out your press release:
- Refer back to the media list that you have built and begin to craft a pitch around your release.In your email, make sure to address the point of your press release and any other timely angles you feel might be relevant to the reporter.
- Make sure you write a pitch that is short and tailored specify to that reporter, mention past articles they have written and how your story is in-line with what they cover.
- Wait one or two days before contacting the reporter directly to see if they have received the press release. Calling is the quickest way to receive a response, but an email will suffice as long as you are willing to be persistent.
- Always respect the reporter’s time and keep deadlines in mind for stories that are particularly timely – magazines are typically on deadline a month before they hit newsstands, weekly newspapers are on deadline a day or two before and daily newspapers are on deadline around 3 p.m.
- Every time you contact the reporter make sure to provide them with additional information not mentioned in your pitch or press release and be ready to be turned down or asked to offer up another story angle.
After it is published
After you’ve gone through all the necessary steps of converting your press release into a story, it is time to get the word out. If possible, post the story on your business’s website and update your social media accounts (Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn) with a link to the article as well. Make sure to obtain a hard copy of the article for your records and display it proudly where everyone can see it. Afterwards, thank the journalist for their work, they did a favor for your business by writing about it and if you were pleasant and easy to work with, they may continue to work with you in the future.
If you are a small business owner and would like to learn more about how to get the most out of your press releases, contact a small business coach at AdviCoach today.