If you want to get the eye of the press, you have to think such as the press.
In the 20+ years I've been in public areas relations, one of the most difficult aspects of the game to instruct clients is that the press is not really a service organization whose sole purpose would be to cover what PR people pitch them. Their business model is straightforward; they exist to see and entertain their readers, to allow them to grow their subscriber base and sell advertising against those numbers.
So, if you want to be involved in the "press game" it is vital to identify what wins the press loyal readers and increases their circulation...and then make them to accomplish it! The 1st step is to obtain together a power-packed pitch. According to the Associated Press Stylebook the most well-liked term for a media release is not press release; it's NEWS release. All things considered, it's not called a press-paper - it's called a NEWSpaper. Want it or not, public relations people don't get to determine what the news headlines is. Only news professionals get to accomplish this if they choose what to publish, print or air.
So, simply because your company opened a fresh store in Cincinnati, doesn't ensure it is NEWS. However, there may well be considered a nugget of newsworthiness that you can offer around the press in order to have them thinking about the opening of one's store.
Where do you discover those nuggets? Here are a few suggestions to help you mine the news headlines gold in all your announcements:
Read Your Local Newspapers -You can't locate a news hook until do you know what the news headlines of the day actually is. And, since it changes every day, you'll need to keep on the surface of the news (or hire an agency to perform that function for you, and trust their judgment if they advise you of potential news hooks).
Determine How Your Story is Relevant - This is actually the lowest hanging fruit in the news headlines hook orchard trend press news. Search for anything in your business that is strongly related news taking place in your community or nationally. If you're opening a fresh bicycle shop in Los Angeles, then do some news searches to see what reporters have already been currently talking about the area.
Say you learn that the location is economically depressed, where case you can pitch to the press the idea that a fresh retailer opening there is a boost to the neighborhood economy, and that you're ready to have a chance on success in that community. Or you might learn that bicycle ridership has increased nationally by 10 percent over the previous year, with new riders indicating they have started since they're trying to get fit. Now you can pitch the neighborhood press on the angle your new shop is directed at capitalizing on this national trend.
This strategy is called "localizing" a national story, which every newspaper and TV producer loves. Because it's a national story, they are going to report it anyway, but they'd prefer to have a local hook to allow them to be more strongly related the neighborhood audience.
Develop Stories That Have a Beginning, Middle and End - Make sure you tell reporters the full story. Let's use the bicycle shop as an example. Opening a bicycle shop may not be much of a story on its own, but what's the story behind the story? Did the owners overcome any unusual obstacles in fulfilling the dream of opening their store? Was the master ever a competitive bicyclist? Have the owners used their understanding of the sport or inventory to greatly help any children's charities or causes? Are they active inside their community? Identify the story behind the story, and you'll have lots of opportunities to locate a news hook that's relevant.
Take Action - There's reasons why so many commercial enterprises and not-for-profit charities and community organizations partner up for special events - it's a win-win situation for everyone. It's very important to every commercial enterprise to be a good citizen and use some of the resources to greatly help others, and additionally it helps to produce sometimes un-newsworthy events relevant. Opening a bicycle shop isn't a huge deal, but holding a grand opening event for an area children's charity makes the opening more relevant. If the owners use the event to greatly help raise money and donate excess inventory to needy children, it is both a suitable venture and a truly heartwarming feel-good story worth news coverage.
Helping people should be its own reward, needless to say, but that's also why newspapers and charities love these events. It not only gives editors and TV crews something joyful and pleased to report, but inaddition it enables the charities to obtain their messages out to town at large. Your organization improves its public image, and deservedly so, as long as the help is genuine and comes not from the pocketbook, but from the heart.
By the end of the day, most of the time you'll find news hooks in even the most mundane of news releases. The main element thing to consider is that the focus of the release isn't to sell, sell, sell - it's to convince a reporter that you have news to report and that their readers could be informed or entertained by what you have to inform them.