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99 Prominent Publicists Share Their Top Strategies to Earn Media Coverage

So you just started a business. You probably want to get the word out. You want some Marketing. But where do you start?

“Marketing” means to take measures to help bring your product or service to the market. There are two basic means of marketing, Paid Media and Earned Media.

Paid Media includes advertising such as a TV ad or a Facebook ad. The advantage of paid media is that it is fairly early to obtain, and it can also be targeted to a very specific demographic. The drawback of Paid Media is that it is less credible or believable. Consumers know that anyone can pay for an advertisement.

Earned Media is another form of marketing. Earned media is when a company or individual is discussed in an editorial or journalistic segment, like this ThriveGlobal article, for example. The advantage of Earned Media is that it is much more credible, because there is an assumption that the journalist or editors chose to cover the company or individual based on merit and not because there was any financial exchange. The drawback of Earned Media is that it is much more difficult to obtain.

So indeed, how does one earn, Earn Media? I turned to more than 99 prominent publicists, people who’s job is to help people earn media coverage, to share their top tips to get featured in the Media. Here are their ideas:


Kelly Howard, CEO, EightSixtySouth

My Communications Background

Kelly Howard is the CEO of EightSixtySouth, ​the strategic communications agency formerly known as Post+Beam. She got her start as the West Coast Director of Post+Beam’s LA office, going on to acquire the company in October 2016 and carry it through a full rebrand. Specializing in branding, social, PR, and community engagement, Kelly continues to make waves in the PR ​industry.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

This first one is pretty common sense — but do your research. You can have the best pitch in the world but if you’re not getting it to the right person or the right publication, you’re wasting your time. Second, be persistent without being annoying. Even if your pitch is great and you get it to the right person, you have to remember that ​the editor​ is​ likely​ getting 1000 emails a day. Find a way to break through the noise and get your content in front of the​m​. There is a line to border between persistent and annoying, however! An editor at WWD once told me that I was pleasantly persistent. That’s the key! Third, always be reading and consuming information, from print and online publications to social outlets and more. Keep ​your finger on ​the pulse of what’s being written about and who’s writing it. ​Being CEO requires you to wear many hats. In addition to getting good media coverage, a great publicist has to know how to saber a bottle of champagne!​ Kelly is sabering a bottle of Coup de Sade Champagne, a sponsor of the Men’s Fitness GameChangers event on September 28th. The event and red carpet was handled by her team at EightSixtySouth.

Emerald-Jane Hunter, President, myWHY Agency, Inc.

My Communications Background

Emerald-Jane is a four-time Emmy award winning producer, former tv talk show booker and named (in 201 40 under 40 Game Changer (by WVON/Ariel Investments) and now an integrated marketing and PR #bossbabe dedicated to working with entrepreneurs, TV/Film Talent, national and international brands to think outside the box to rise above the noise of the crowded marketplace.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

One tip to getting good media coverage is generating good content. It’s all about CONTENT. What have you been tasked to pitch? What’s the story you want everyone to know? Does this story have good legs as is or do you need to add a few more elements to really make it whole so it will pique media interest? You must ask these questions to ensure that what you’re sending to media is actually interesting. When I worked in television I used to read pitches that made me wonder how the publicist writing it didn’t fall asleep.

Another tip to getting good media coverage is to KNOW THE AUDIENCE of the outlet you’re pitching. Research, dig deep, watch several segments, read several articles. Get to know who you’re pitching. Know their style and pitch them accordingly. This will give you much better odds to landing placement. Give them something you know for a fact they’ll want and be interested in.

Final tip — don’t always ask, give. I used to be a talk show booker and always appreciated when I would get an email with a simple question — what are you currently working on and how can I help you fill any holes you might have? . Sometimes it’s just that simple. The journalist, hopefully will appreciate that and feed you with info that’ll almost certainly position you to win.

Alison Maloni, Owner of Alison May Public Relations

My Communications Background

I am a former journalist turned public relations expert. Now on the other side of the pitches, I use my expertise as a journalist to get our clients story told. I am a keynote speaker and moderator for companies across the country. My number one priority however is my three beautiful little girls.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

  1. Be the expert. The media is always looking for experts to weigh in on trending topics. The key is to pay attention to what is going on in your industry and then reach out to the media and let them know that you can talk about that specific topic. Once you appear in the media and do a great job, they will be more inclined to call you back!
  2. Ditch the press release. If you have a story to tell, write a pitch to the media that is simple, short and to the point. Think like the journalist. Ask yourself, why would people want to read or watch the story. Remember, the pitch is your story. It should always have a human element to it.
  3. Follow journalists and their stories on social media. If a journalist does a story on a topic that you can add value to- reach out to them and suggest a follow-up story. You may have another angle for their story and it could turn into a big media placement for you.

Jena Luckman, Communications Director, JUICE Labs

My Communications Background

As a very early adopter of multiple social media platforms, Jena was able to help her future clients get press and make connections. Through her personal social media channels, Jena was able to connect with celebrities, influencers, journalist and public figures, which helped launch her into the world of influencer marketing. Jena is a world-class communicator and has a strong network of celebrities and social media stars, and in 2017, Jena joined JUICE Labs in NYC as their Communications Director.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

1. Sign up for HARO emails. Help A Reporter Out is a free service sent out via email three times a day that helps source stories for reporters for stories. They are broken down by category and are usually for journalists in a time crunch or unable to find information through their regular channels. This means they are eager for relevant pitches and you know exactly what the reporter is looking for.

2. Get personal. Establishing relationships with media locally or in your topic sector is a great way to be proactive. Most journalists have social media — follow them on Twitter, engage with pieces they have written. I’ve found Twitter to be an often-ignored platform for pitching and building relationships, but many journalists invite Twitter pitches. I’ve personally found Twitter to be my secret weapon because you have to get your point across as thoughtfully as possible in a short space, so with the right pitch, you can grab their attention. When it comes time for you to share your pitch or event, they will recognize your name in their inbox. Obviously keep things professional and respect boundaries by not overloading them with notifications.

3. Understand the changing landscape of PR. Public Relations was much more cut and dry ten years ago. Today, you don’t have to limit yourself to press releases or relying on massive budgets to get your information out. Think outside of the box and come up with unique platforms for your brand. Although not the norm, things can go viral overnight. Social media can be your ally. Mainstream journalists are not the only thought leaders you need to have relationships with — influencers in their respective niches can have the same impact on your brand. Search hashtags on Twitter and Instagram and request to join Facebook groups relevant to your industry (only if you qualify — be sure to read the rules of the groups). You’d be surprised how many media connections you can make in groups such as PR, Marketing and Media Czars. These are all things you can do on your own, allowing you to allocate your budget to other efforts.

Brittany Whitmore, Founder and CEO, Exvera Communications Inc.

My Communications Background

Brittany Whitmore is a public relations professional and the founder of Exvera Communications, where she specializes in PR for innovative and emerging technologies. She is also a TEDxWomen organizer and a frequent emcee and public speaker. Brittany was named to BC Business Magazine’s Top 30 Under 30 in 2017.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

Tell a great story

There have been great societies that did not use the wheel, but there have been no societies that did not tell stories. — Ursula K. Le Guin.

No matter what you are pitching — in my case, it could be the implications of a new blockchain protocol, a new app interface or a new method of 3D-printing; the most important thing to remember is to step back and figure out what the story that you are trying to tell is. How does what you are saying fit into and change the lives of your audience? Why does this matter? What is the greater context and what will it change?

Get picky about news, communicate it to your clients

When clients are passionately involved with their products, it is understandable for them to think that every detail of their product is newsworthy. Unfortunately — this is far from the case. Set expectations from the get-go about the likelihood of an announcement being picked up and always try to dig a bit deeper into the announcement to see if you can find a fresh angle that might make it stronger. Sometimes it takes a few hours of brainstorming or research to be able to identify the best angle. And don’t just spam everyone with it, pick your journalists wisely for stories so that you can add value to their work as well.

Get a second opinion

Have someone read the drafts of your pitches and stories long before you send them out. When you’ve read something over dozens of times, not only can you miss errors but the other person also might be able to shift your perspective or add a powerful new detail to your piece. I am so grateful to work with such brilliant people on a daily basis — teamwork lifts the quality of everything.

Nora, Co-Founder, Launchway Media

My Communications Background

Nora Leary is the Co-Founder and Head of Marketing of Launchway Media, a digital agency that helps startups and small businesses enter the US market. Nora is bilingual and has over 10 years experience working with technology companies.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

1. If you can’t describe your company in one sentence without industry jargon, then you might not understand your solution well enough, and you need to go back to the drawing board. Use this simple one-sentence pitch format from The Founder Institute as a guide: My company, {name of company}, is developing {a defined offering}, to help {a defined audience} {solve a problem} with {the secret sauce}.

2. When pitching reporters, try to avoid these words in your pitch: First, Only, Huge, Best. These words signal inexperience.

3. Begin your emails to reporters with social proof. What makes you or your company stand out among the dozens of pitches reporters receive every day? For example: Your startup is a Y Combinator graduate, Your founding team is all under 25 years old, You previously worked at Facebook, etc.

Alison Seibert, Founder and Principal, The James Collective

My Communications Background

Alison Seibert is the founder and principal of The James Collective, a boutique public relations and integrated communications agency. With offices in New York City and the SF Bay Area, Alison and her team represent food, beverage, travel and wellness clients who are committed to creating community and culture through their businesses. A natural connector with an innate curiosity for people, Alison couples over a dozen years of experience working with US + international food, beverage and travel clients with the knowledge gained through her international MBA studies and her extensive travel and volunteer work both throughout the country and abroad.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

1. Be someone, some place, or something, the people can believe in.

When we consider working with clients, we always consider: would we be interested in reading about this? Do we like what this company is doing, appreciate their product, and believe in who they are as an organization or as individuals? This is, of course, relatively subjective, but I always think that if we’re interested, most likely other people will be too. The same goes for media. Tell your story. In telling your story to garner great media coverage, ensure that it is authentic. That means, you have something to share that is interesting, necessary and/or of quality in the first place — something that people can believe in.

2. Consistency is key.

When working with media, consistency is of utmost importance. By consistency I mean in your professionalism, in your ability to deliver quality answers, information, products or photos under tight deadlines, and even in WHAT you bring to media. Consistency builds trust, which in turn build both ongoing relationships as well as great media coverage.

3. Relationships, relationships, relationships.

Did I say relationships? Nurturing meaningful, mutually beneficial relationships with media is the most important aspect, in my opinion, in gaining quality — and ongoing — media coverage. I know some media who won’t even open an email unless they know the sender! Taking the time to understand who the person is, what interests them, and how you can build a sound relationship with them without just wanting something will make your long term placements. Media, like business, like life, really comes down to relationships.

Monica Guzman, CEO, Startr Co.

My Communications Background

Monica is a PR and marketing professional with almost 15 years of experience representing brands and individuals across industries including food & beverage, lifestyle, entertainment, sports, travel, hospitality and non-profit. As the CEO of Los Angeles-based PR agency Startr Co., Monica and her team work to create awareness and buzz for innovative small to mid-size businesses.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

Tip 1: Know who you’re pitching — Mass pitches, email blasts and cold calls are the easiest way to NOT get press coverage, while also making enemies of the media. Respect their work, and research whoever you are pitching in advance. Know what they cover, how they like to cover it, who their audience is, and what information you have that can be helpful for them. Then craft a pitch that is catered to the journalist and showcase why it is something they should consider (in a non-pushy, non-condescending way). You goal should be to create a relationship with the media contact that can go beyond the one piece you are trying to secure.

Tip 2: Be timely — A good pitch, that will result in good coverage, is tied to a topic that people find important. Evergreen pitches that have no real relevance to conversations happening in the world, or among a specific audience, can seem overly promotional or superficial. Think you have the best brand ever? Good. Now explain why your brand is so amazing by tying it into a trend, a specific date or event, or even something in the news. Pitches that are timely tend to get the attention of media more quickly, and also tend to be published faster than those that have no tie to current events or news.

Tip 3: Follow up is key — Journalists receive hundreds, if not thousands, of emails and calls per day. Chances are, your first attempt at a pitch might slip through the cracks or be overlooked entirely. With this in mind, follow up is key to ensuring you get through to media, and once you do, that pieces actually get published. Follow up can also be a great tool for informing the media of new developments that can make the story better. While it is important that you do not stalk or spam a media contact (especially if they flat out say they are not interested), stay on top of what you are sending out and circle back often to make sure they have all the info they need.

Lucas PenzeyMoog, Director of Content Strategy, Emerging Insider

My Communications Background

Lucas started out in the non-profit sector but has since pivoted to the PR world in the areas of emerging technologies, with a focus on blockchain and Artificial Intelligence. He first got involved in blockchain in 2011 as a Bitcoin miner, and is an active trader in the space. As Director of Content Strategy at Emerging Insider he keeps his finger on the pulse of what’s next in the tech world, and is an avid science fiction reader and futurologist.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

Step one will always be the same: tell a compelling and unique story. Journalists are bombarded every day with hundreds of canned pitches that rightfully fall by the wayside. If you as the publicist aren’t intrigued by your pitch, those you’re sending it to will be infinitely less interested. Find the novel angle, the attention grabbing hook that will interest journalists because that’s what will interest readers. At its most basic, we’re all trying to get a slice of the attention economy and control the narrative, however fleeting it might be.

Step two is to know who you’re pitching. You can scrape do alright by endlessly cold-calling and mass emailing, but the real fruits will be born by investing in relationships. This takes time, and it can be hard to break into the media relations world, but putting in the time will pay massive dividends down the road.

Step three is to stay on the forefront of what’s trending. More importantly, you need to be looking for trends that are on the immediate horizon. This is especially true when publicizing complex, future-leaning areas such as blockchain or AI. When the industry is nascent, there’s a lot of fluidity and flexibility, and therefore opportunity, in crafting the next trending story.

Dini von Mueffling, CEO, Dini von Mueffling Communication

My Communications Background

Dini von Mueffling is the founder and CEO of Dini von Mueffling Communications, a multiple Cannes Lions award winning public relations firm in her native New York City. She was named one of 2017 top women in PR by PR News. Among her best known clients are Monica Lewinsky, whom she has successfully repositioned as an anti-bullying advocate, whose TED Talk has been viewed 12 million times; the gun violence prevention organization Sandy Hook Promise; and Wag!, the on demand dog walking company.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

1. Know who your client is (and isn’t) and what their strengths and stories are. At DVMC, we do this by doing deep dives into our clients’ most intimate details, learning about what drives them. Write these stories down and file them. Reread your files when you’re stuck. These nuggets become the gold of great stories and coverage.

2. Network, network, network and LISTEN. I’m always pitching. Some of the biggest stories I’ve landed for clients have come from conversations I’ve had about other clients. Always ask a reporter, editor or producer what they are working on. There’s nothing wrong with saying, while I have you on the phone . . . You just never know. Grab a cup of coffee or drink for no reason. ALWAYS send thank you notes.

3. Pick up the phone! Stop relying on email alone. Younger people seem to have forgotten this. One of my favorite lines is I’ve been typing for hours. I thought I’d just pick up the phone and see if you were there. It’s amazing what some real voice contact does.

Josh Inglis, CEO, Propllr PR

My Communications Background

Josh Inglis, a member of the 2017 Business Insider Top People in Tech PR, is the founder and CEO of Propllr, a PR and content marketing firm that helps startups and technology companies gain visibility and credibility with key audiences. His first foray into technology came in 1981 when he bought a Sinclair ZX-81 — complete with 64k RAM cartridge — with his paper-route, lawn-mowing and snow-shoveling earnings. Josh is a mentor at Techstars and SXSW, as well as various startup incubators and accelerators.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

Top 3 Tips to Get Good Media Coverage:

1. Don’t spam. Quality media coverage never starts with garbage outreach. Reporters can tell whether you’ve done your research or you’re carpet-bombing, so make sure you’re doing the former.

2. Ask Does this reporter really care what I have to say? Invest time in understanding the why behind a reporter’s coverage as well as the what. When you understand both, you’ll have a clear idea of whether what you have to say is a match. If it’s not, don’t pitch.

3. Start small to build real relationships. It’s much harder to get someone’s attention if they have no idea who you are. Take the time to read, share, comment, and engage (in real life, if possible!) before you ever pitch an idea.

Natalie Davidson, Director, Brix Media Co

My Communications Background

Natalie’s work in PR in both North America and Europe has allowed her to hone her expertise within tech (SaaS, consumer tech, cryptocurrency) and lifestyle (fitness, wellness, food and beverage). Her work with clients as varied as PayPal, SoulCycle and First Bitcoin Trust has resulted in coverage in the Wall Street Journal, Wired and USA Today. She’s passionate about telling brand stories in an engaging way that affects the bottom line.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

1. Add value

Businesses all have stories to share with the media, but the press is selective about which stories they cover. Brands that are consistently landing positive media coverage are telling stories that add value to readers by breaking new information, sharing a different approach, or exposing an emerging trend.

2. Know your audience

Different types of media that speaks to different demographics will be interested in a different part of your business’ story. A fashion magazine’s editor won’t care about the same angles as a daily business newspaper, so don’t take a one-size fits all approach. Dig into which stories you can tell that will add value to the specific kind of media you’re looking to land.

3. Keep business objectives in mind

Landing media coverage can take a lot of time and effort and will have a massive business impact if executed thoughtfully. Make sure that your underlying business objectives are clear throughout the process so that all of your messaging and media targets are positioned in a way that will affect your bottom line.

Teresa Bigelow, Founder, Spiral5 Media

My Communications Background

Based between New York and The Rest of the World, Teresa is an international public relations consultant and communications strategist. As founder of Spiral5 Media, her work traverses tech, alternative lifestyle and art + culture. Teresa has worked with dozens of companies and individuals across the U.S., Europe and South Asia, and her clients appear regularly in publications like the New York Times, Forbes, New Yorker, Fast Company and TechCrunch. More at www.spiral5.com.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

1) Have a story to tell that people care about. Before pitching a story think about the larger trend or significance that extends beyond your company or product. The end goal for a press announcement or feature story might be to get more clients, customers, investors, or advertisers on your platform, but the story itself needs to extend beyond your own needs. If you pitch something that is very clearly a glorified advertisement for your first-of-its-kind, highly-innovative, competitive sales platform, journalists and editors will see right through it. They don’t want to be your marketing tool. Their job is to tell factual and informative stories.

2) Be authentic, genuine and thoughtful. I like to say I practice human relations, rather than public relations. I’m all about transparency and communicating with journalists on a level that feels like a real-world, human-to-human exchange of energy — because it is. This doesn’t necessarily mean you have to know them IRL. In general, treating journalists as names on an Excel sheet or boxes to checkoff will almost always come through in the actual pitch, and I don’t think anyone appreciates that. I do my best to avoid mass pitches. I would rather hit up 10 journalists who I know will find this story interesting, and to whom I can tailor a pitch or offer exclusive material, than blast it off to 100 journalists whom I barely know.

3) Follow up, and follow up again. And then follow up one more time with additional info, a new launch date, or other info that you haven’t provided already. I would say that at least 80% of my media placements are a result of a follow-up. If you haven’t received a response after a third email, make a note to explore different angles that might be a better fit for the journalist in the future.

Renee Beck, Director of PR & Partnerships, Terra’s Kitchen

My Communications Background

Renee Beck has more than a decade of experience with clients spanning industries from green building to health and wellness. After making the move from corporate PR to startups, she’s added influencer, content and partner marketing under her PR score. Her speciality is helping startups craft their stories and gain exposure.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

I’m a connector and relationship person by nature, which is what drew me to PR. I like connecting with a journalist to help them with a story; being able to make that connection is rewarding, so my first tip is to simply be/have a source. Don’t try to sell your company/product. Just offer an expert who can speak to a topic the journalist covers. At Terra’s Kitchen, I have amazing experts in business, nutrition and culinary fields; each can offer expertise that isn’t always about the company itself.

My second tip is to think outside of the box of traditional PR. Two of my favorite ideas that generated PR for my previous company, OrderUp, weren’t traditional. I came up with an idea of an awards program for restaurants on our platform, which garnered media coverage in each city. I also pulled the most outlandish, hilarious special requests from orders and created a Top 14 list that I published as a community contributor on Buzzfeed. (Thanks, BF!)

My last tip is to connect with TV game and talk shows. Sounds random, but shows are always looking for products to feature — usually for free — and only require audience gift cards in return. You have to run the numbers to see if the ROI is there for your business, but this tactic garnered hits for Terra’s Kitchen on The Price is Right, The Steve Harvey Show, The Talk, The Doctors, and more. They’ll show visuals, have the product on set, share a blurb and usually post to the site with a link.

Emily Taffel, Owner of Mugsy PR

My Communications Background

Emily Taffel started her a career in yachting and hospitality PR and then opened the thriving firm Mugsy PR which boasts a variety of clients from international children’s programs to small mom and pop retail shops and everything in between. Emily, her business partner Sarah and their team at Mugsy have been a silent but powerful force behind some of the most talked about media moments in Miami since opening their doors in 2013, and her client list grows every year.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

FORGET. 1. Forget corporate speak. Just talk to the media like they are a normal person — because they are! 2. Forget your ego. Your first contact isn’t about you — or your client really. This is about what the reporter needs. Give them that consistently, and they will make it about you next time. 3. DON’T forget your manners. Schedule calls, call on time, and don’t randomly call as you never know when someone is on deadline. Provide what is needed before you’re asked for it. Say thank you when your client is placed in a story. You’re not entitled to coverage — earn it.

Lindsay Siwiec, Principal, Jet Black Public Relations

My Communications Background

Lindsay Siwiec has spent the last ten years working in fashion and beauty, art and design, hospitality, health and wellness, talent, and luxury lifestyle PR and marketing in NYC, Chicago, Miami, and LA. Her background in strategic development and media relations has secured coveted brand placements in top magazines and news outlets for clients such as Benefit Cosmetics, Ramsay Fairs, Alo Yoga, Ford Models, Flywheel Sports, Sydney Evan, Bionda Castana, Parke & Ronen, and The Bar Method. Her expertise also lies in the development of creative brand initiatives, as well as celebrity and corporate partnerships; producing events for clients like E!, Miami Fashion Week Swim, Project Runway, Bravo, and Chicago Magazine.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

Know who you’re pitching and what they cover. Editors get hundreds of pitches a day and the last thing they want is an inbox full of irrelevant information that they would never write about. Blindly blasting a list of emails will rarely get you the press your client is looking for. Take the time to do the research and craft curated and strategic pitches and you’ll start locking in those bigger, feature placements for your clients.

Stay on top of the trends. You need to be reading both consumer and trade publications that pertain to your client every single day, in addition to general current events. Having the knowledge of what’s happening in your industry will give you the tools you need to create a relative story for your client, and often help to spark new ideas and angles to take.

Establish differentiators. What makes your client different from its competitors? What is the unique feature, aspect, or benefit that it delivers? Establishing competitive advantage gives you solid ground to stand on when pitching your client, while giving journalists something worthy of writing about.

Andrea Holland, Founder/CEO, DialedPR

My Communications Background

Andrea is a mover and a shaker: dynamic PR professional, business builder, PR author for LinkedIn Learning, speaker and international travel junkie. In 2014 after 9 years in Corporate America, she quit her job and traveled the world, helping international startups launch their brands. A classically trained singer, she enjoys singing in her acapella group and is currently preparing for her first TEDx talk. www.andreaholland.com.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

There always seem to be a lot of tips on HOW to do something. Especially in PR, so many hacks and pieces of advice: how to get good press coverage, how to talk to reporters and how to work with the media. However, what about starting with what NOT to do?

Here are three tips on what NOT to say to a reporter, to gain or strengthen media relationships that will last and ultimately, help get the coverage you want.

1. Never lead with My company is the FIRST to do [INSERT COOL THING YOU DO]. Being the first to do something is huge. It can mean accolades for ‘leading the charge’ in an industry. However, you don’t want to lead with this type of statement. Why? Most of the time, statements like this leave reporter’s suspect about the validity of the claim. Especially if they don’t know you — they have no clue if you are credible source or not. It comes across as self-serving. Let the market decide (via customer traction) or wait until you get a conversation going with reporter before making the claim.

2. Never say Don’t print this or this is off the record DURING an interview. Everything is on the record. However, if there is something that you want to discuss with the reporter that you don’t want printed or attributed to you, you are absolutely allowed to ask– beforehand. Unless the reporter agrees beforehand that what you say is either not to be used or can be used without naming you as the source, it is fair game. Don’t leave your company open to criticism by looking like a rookie and potentially giving someone the scoop on news that you are not ready to present to the public.

3. Don’t give a reporter a deadline or say, This needs to be published by Friday. Unless the information is material, (i.e., a round of funding, a launch with multiple players involved, a major partnership with a publicly traded company where stock price could be affected), the story is considered evergreen and will run at the reporter’s convenience. What is important to you might not be important to them, and they are beholden to editors and news cycles and content other than yours. With crowdfunding platforms, be sure to provide at three weeks of runway time, if you are asking the reporter to cover your product when you launch your campaign.

Pamela Thomas, President, The Thomas Collective

My Communications Background

Pamela Thomas began her career in broadcast journalism prior to transitioning into the communications industry, where she spent a decade managing numerous national campaigns in the Food & Wine and Technology sectors. She founded The Thomas Collective, a marketing-communications firm thirteen years ago, bringing aboard some of the world’s most iconic brands in the consumer space. The agency, recently named as a Great Place to Work, specializes in creating socially-relevant campaigns delivered via publicity and social media, digital support and experiential opportunities.

American Business Awards named Thomas as a recipient of a Stevie Award for Women in Business, citing The Thomas Collective as one of the top ten small business of the year. She holds degrees in Urban Planning and Communications and a M.F.A. from the University of Washington.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

1. Make your subject line impossible to ignore. It’s your first — and maybe only — opportunity to capture a journalist’s attention, so develop the subject line of your email accordingly. The recipe for a winning subject line is simple — just combine equal parts brevity, clarity and wit. Think Drop Your Pants for Charity over Company Launches New Clothing Drive.

2. Make your pitch relatable. Immediately. Some journalists receive hundreds of pitches daily, so make yours short, sweet and instantly applicable to their beat. Map it out, editing it to one sentence and then applying an example that directly relates to their audience. If you’re launching an app to help senior adults better manage their pensions, you might reference expenses associated with treating the top three unexpected health issues — a key area of concern for this segment.

3. Think of a journalist like a high school crush. Remember finding out everything about your crush without speaking two words to them? Apply the same thinking to inform your approach: read their stories. Identify their perspective. Check out their bio for insight to better position your story for them. This preparation extends a level of respect on which, unlike high school, grown-up relationships are based.

Lesley Gold, CEO + Co-founder, SutherlandGold Group

My Communications Background

Lesley Gold is a master storyteller, creating market positioning and messaging for innovative startups and top brands like Sony and Comcast Ventures. Since launching the PR firm SutherlandGold, Lesley has helped position and market hundreds of brands, products, companies, people, and ideas, leading some clients to go public and several to be acquired by major tech and consumer brands. Prior to founding SutherlandGold, Lesley also worked as a network television producer at CNN, served as the director of radio services at the Democratic National Committee, and has held positions as a campaign strategist and press secretary for former U.S. Labor Secretary Robert B. Reich.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

1. Build a Brand for Yourself By Putting a Stake in the Ground

Don’t water down your comments so that they mean nothing to nobody. Nothing gets you cut out of a story faster than playing it safe and staying close to your marketing talking points. Give the reporter a sound-bite they can walk away with, so think of the important issues that you and your company are not afraid to own. Is the subject climate change? Why we need global talent? Whatever it is, do your research on the topic so that you can fuse your anecdotal evidence with hard facts so that you’re a credible source that reporters will keep wanting to come back to.

2. Know the Part in the Story the Reporter is Asking You to Play

A Reporter’s job is to tell the the story, so your job is to play an essential role in that story. When a reporter is looking for sources, they’re not just looking for your expertise, they’re looking for strong points of view and to assemble a cast of characters that illuminate something different from each other. What does your point of view provide for the story? Which character are you and what are you adding?

3. Give As Good as You Get

What information can you give a reporter that no one else can? Make yourself valuable to the reporter. If you can’t be in their story, how can you show them that they can use you for another story?

4. It’s Called News For a Reason

It’s new. Whatever you say should be related to the news cycle. The more you can tie-in your expertise to bigger trends, the more sellable your point of view is. Stay up-to-date on the latest controversies in your industries. Are founders being given too much control over their company through stock options? What is a business leader’s role in the #metoo movement? Think about how can you relate your story multiple intersecting audiences.

Victoria Kent, Founder, Victoria Kent PR

My Communications Background

In 2015, Victoria Kent founded Victoria Kent Public Relations (VKPR), specializing in restaurant, hospitality and lifestyle public relations with supporting photography services. A career highlight was securing five TODAY Show segments in 13 months with Chicago talent. Local and national placements include Chicago Tribune, Vogue, Food & Wine, Kathie Lee & Hoda, People Magazine, Cosmopolitan Magazine, Perez Hilton, LA Times to name a few.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

Anticipating needs during video shoots is key. Suggesting additional dishes to fill out a shot, offering to hold lighting, running food, working with the chef beforehand to make sure they’re prepared to execute the recipe in the easiest way possible for the videographer, while still getting the shots.

I do the research for news pegs. With TV in particular, tying a client or offering to a timely news peg gives the producer more of a reason to feature my client. I’ve done the hard work of figuring out why.

I try to make life easier for every media person I work with. In initial emails, I include links to high res images with photo credit, sample quotes and all pertinent info to minimize back and forth. If try to give media person everything they need so they could potentially write it without ever having to ask for follow up info.

I try to be a valuable resource even if it means directing media to other PR contacts and suggesting people outside of my client roster to help media get what they need. By doing this, I become one of the first publicists that media reach out to when they need a source.

Juda Engelmayer, President, HeraldPR

My Communications Background

25 year public relations veteran from politics to government, and corporate branding and crisis communications. With big firm experience for over 15 years, Juda’s new firm HeraldPR delivers the precise message to the exact audience.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

The key to generating good public relations for a client is to know how to communicate the message interestingly, appropriately, timely and considerate of the journalist’s fields of interest and recent reporting routines.

It must be interesting, because the news is striving even more today to give the people what they (think they) want . So, if a story topic is mundane, or with very few devotees, it is unlikely to be considered.

Appropriately, because you must know the news cycle. If the media is focusing on crypto currencies and foreign policies and you present a client growing flowers in the winter, it may appear to the ones being pitched that you have no idea what is going on in the world.

Timely, goes along with appropriately, because if you do pitch the client growing flowers in the winter two weeks after the media has covered the coldest days of the year and what it means for global warming, you may find yourself being ignored. Pitch the right idea at the right time.

Then there is a journalist’s field of interest. You must know what someone covers to get their attention. For starters you need to know if your story on a financial matter is being pitched to a journalist who covers and understands finance, and even then, if s/he covers Asian markets and you are pitching a USA based equity fund’s new investments in marijuana dispensaries, you are barking up the wrong tree.

All of this means little if you do not establish and maintain good, positive relationships with your media contacts. Be their friend too. Know then, appreciate them, don’t inundate them with nonsense, and once is a while just say hello without asking for anything in return. Sometimes, when possible, offer a scoop on something even if it does not benefit you. Learn to communicate with the media in their language and in their schedules, and the rest can come a whole lot easier.

Megan Fazio, CEO/Founder, Neon Public Relations

My Communications Background

Megan Fazio is the CEO & Founder of Neon Public Relations, LLC, a full-service PR and marketing firm based in Las Vegas representing hospitality, entertainment, adventure and non-profit clients. As a public relations business professional with several years of travel & tourism-related industries, multi-agency, high risk accounts and non-profit PR experience, Megan focuses on helping businesses penetrate targeted markets and attain high visibility in these markets by garnering positive buzz and media attention, but more importantly, she measures her success according to the impact she has on driving her clients’ business forward. A trusted advisor at the highest level, Megan continues to lead and manage innovative communications strategies for hospitality, business, tech, events, and incident crisis management.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

1. Do your research on journalists you’re pitching and personalize the pitch. PR pros should take the time to get to know the journalist they’re contacting and what matters to them. Reference their beats or past articles you find interesting, and make it a point to demonstrate, in some way, that you’ve your research on them if you expect them to further research the topic you’re pitching.

2. Be objective. More than ever, self-serving or over-promotional pitches aren’t what media are looking for. As hard as it is, being as un-biased and neutral as possible is what news media connects with most (do you like being around your friend that brags about themselves to no end? … didn’t think so.) and most often results in feature stories.

3. Culminate relationships with your clients and media outside of the office and email. You’ll find the real stories aren’t lying around in what comes out of stiff conference room meetings, and ideas flourish more naturally when you develop a more meaningful relationship with clients — go grab cocktails or go on a local adventure involving fresh air. The benefit is 2-fold: it shows you care to know more, and you’ll have more interesting content to pitch. Same goes for media — maybe you’ll find what strikes a chord with key media players for your clients when meeting for coffee and talking about their personal likes and dislikes.

Hannah Schneider, Owner, Hannah Schneider Creative

My Communications Background

After working in fine dining restaurants holding positions from behind the bar, to private dining coordinator and restaurant manager, to then filling a publicist role at a high-end boutique hospitality firm, Hannah moved from San Diego to New York to take her career to the next level. Hannah’s 8 years in public relations and social media includes work as a social media manager, publicist and now founder and CEO of HSC Creative. Hannah’s extensive background for top hospitality and travel clients has led to strong relationships with media landing placements on local and national broadcast, print and online outlets including Good Morning America, Today Show, FOOD & WINE, Refinery 29, Thrillist, Eater, Cosmopolitan, Delish, Insider, Buzzfeed, New York Times and more!

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

Tip 1: Killer Subject Line — There’s nothing worse than a snoozy subject line, people! Editors literally get hundreds of pitches a day, you need to catch their attention and do it fast so they feel like they have to read on or know what you’re talking about. Trust me, it works.

Tip 2: Efficient Pitches — If it doesn’t add value, you don’t need it. If it’s common sense to an editor or a reader, take it out. Think of the editor you are pitching as the busiest person you know…no really they probably are! Take out spring has sprung or the best you’ve ever had because they’ve heard it all before. Tell them what value you can provide and ask them exactly what you want, this isn’t a guessing game. If you want them to include your client in an upcoming roundup, say so.

Tip 3: Get Social — Having a personal connection or contact is key to securing your clients top notch press. Follow and get social with all the publications and editors that you are pitching. If you can add a personal tidbit like I hope your trip to Portugal was great they know you are paying attention and took time to research their interests. Now, when the editors see you pop up daily on Instagram or you’ve bonded over your love for your cats via Twitter, they’re going to notice your name in a cluttered inbox. This can also help you come up with pitch ideas that you know they’d be into!

Aly Jamison, APR, Owner, Jamison PR

My Communications Background

Aly Jamison, APR, is the owner of Jamison PR. Aly works with clients in a wide range of industries, including construction, security, fitness and education. She provides a variety of services such as media relations, social media, content marketing, award recognition and more. Connect with Aly on Twitter @AlyJamison

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

My top three tips to secure media coverage include:

1) Request and follow writing guidelines. Almost every publication that accepts guest articles has their own writing guidelines. It’s in your best interest to request these in advance and reference them as you write articles for those publications. Do they have a requirement on length? Do they want you to send the entire article for review or just a pitch? Asking for this document will come in very handy and will increase your chances of securing coverage if you give them exactly what they’re looking for.

2) Leave media pitching to the experts. I’ve seen companies try to tackle this on their own with no success. They write pitches that are three paragraphs long. I assure you that won’t work. PR professionals have developed the relationships, they know the various outlets, and they know how to write short pitches that get straight to the point.

3) Be a resource. Don’t just focus on developing relationships with the media, but connect with other PR professionals. I’ve come across stories that aren’t a good fit for my clients, but they’re a perfect match for someone else I know. Those practitioners have done the same for me. Work together and you’ll uncover more opportunities.

Brenda Manea, Senior Account Executive, BAM Communications

My Communications Background

Brenda started her career working for San Diego-based tech PR firm BAM Communications in 2014, focusing most on handling media relations for innovative technology startups. She quickly discovered her love and passion for telling the unique stories of each of her clients through media, and has built relationships and secured feature pieces with an array of top tier influencers and journalists.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

(1) Prep your materials — Have a new product launch coming up? Announcing a big partnership? First thing’s first, be sure to prepare all collateral at least two weeks (when possible) in advance of any announcement so you can provide reporters with everything they need, giving them ample time to write their stories. Nothing rubs a reporter the wrong way more than not having all your ducks in a row after they’re already excited about a story you pitched them.

(2) Paint a picture with your pitch — The best way to help a reporter see the story potential from your pitch is by painting a picture that describes exactly what it would look like — whether it’s a broadcast segment or a bylined article — and why it’s a fit for their audience. Provide brief bios for the experts involved, include visual elements and walk through how you see the story unveiling.

(3) Research helps, always — Make reporters’ lives easier and do some of the work for them by conducting the necessary market research that helps to describe the why within your pitch. This will immediately establish credibility for both you and your story idea, and will quickly a reporter’s attention as they’re sifting through hundreds of repetitive pitches that all sound the exact same.

Mike Driehorst, Public Relations Strategist, Weaving Influence

My Communications Background

Mike Driehorst is a public relations strategist for Weaving Influence. After an early career in journalism, Mike has worked in public relations for 20 years, and traces his professional digital roots to 2006. During his career, Mike has worked with a range of local and national organizations, from publishing and non-profit to automotive, construction, manufacturing and retail.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

Be persistent: If you believe in your story angle or client, don’t let the rejection or no answers get you down. In today’s media landscape — traditional, digital, social, broadcast, podcast, guest columnists, etc. — there are enough worthwhile, pertinent media outlets to research and pitch your story to. Don’t give up.

Be human: No one likes to deal with fake news or lies. You don’t, and the media don’t have time for that. Don’t spam media contacts with stories and news releases irrelevant to them. Treat them as you’d want to be pitched to. Also, find the top media outlets and media contacts you want to reach, and follow them on your social accounts. @ them, share their posts, and engage with them in-between pitches. Show you are interested in their writing, even if it doesn’t impact you or your clients.

Be curious: Feature-focused profile stories are hard to come by, much less successfully pitch (unless you truly have a subject who is ground-breaking or innovative). Stay on top of what’s going on in your industry or clients’ industries and pitch angles that tie to what your media contacts are writing about. The more successful pitches tie into writers’ interests. So, if you help them do their jobs well, your efforts will help you — and your employer or client.

Tequilla White, Managing Partner, Tequilla White PR

My Communications Background

Tequilla White, is the founder of Tequilla White PR. She is a results driven media professional with a passion for storytelling and helping brands grow. Challenging the status quo in the public relations industry, Tequilla crafts creative campaigns to raise awareness for her clients.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

Outreach is key when it comes to securing placements for your clients. It can be frustrating because of course you know how amazing your client and/or their product is, but no one else does. But don’t worry, I got you with THREE of the best ways to build a media list that gets press hits for your clients.

1. Do Your Research

Being a publicist is about being a detective and finding the information you need to make your pitch a success. Anytime you are reading a website and come across a story that you think would be a good fit for your client, find out who writes it and add them to your list. Make sure to include the link to the story in a column on your list so you can refer to it during your pitch. (writers love to know you read their work)

2. Get A Leg Up On The Competition

If you are having trouble getting your pitches to land, pay attention to what the competition is doing. If there are brands that are similar to your clients’, pay attention to the coverage they receive. Add the stories and writers to your list under a tab for CMR (competitive market research). This helps when you send the pitch and you can add in that you saw their piece on X and you think your client would be of interest for an upcoming story.

3. Personalize Everything

Once you start building relationships with editors, update your list with more personal notes and tips. Those notes can range from birthdays, to how they like to be pitched (i.e. phone, email, social media) and anything you may have learned about major moments in their life (weddings, promotions, movements)

Sacha Cohen, President, Grassfed Media

My Communications Background

Sacha helps conscious companies and non-profits achieve outstanding national and local media coverage. Clients have been featured in NPR, The Washington Post, Food & Wine, New York Times Zagat, Town & Country and many other outlets.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

Top tips to get good media coverage:

1. Research your target outlets and writers as much as possible. And don’t just rely on services like Cision, which are sometimes out of date. Look at the writer’s social media feeds to get even more insights into the topics they cover and their interests. Get to know what kinds of articles they write, the voice/tone of each outlet, and article types (e.g. essays, interviews, how-tos, etc).

2. Personalize all of your pitches and make sure you truly understand who you are pitching and the kinds of things they write about.

3. Make it easy for the reporter to access top-quality photos by using tools like Dropbox or Google Drive.

4. Don’t make writers work to find information. Always include web links, contact information, product descriptions and pricing, etc.

5. Build relationships with writers. Be an indispensable source of information and be super helpful and responsive. Become their go-to source!

Rebecca Deutsch, Account Supervisor, Makovsky

My Communications Background

Rebecca Deutsch is a public relations enthusiast who has experience implementing implementing strategic public relations programs for clients such as PogoTec, African Wildlife Foundation, Mustela®, Summer Infant, BABYZEN® and Johnson & Johnson. Rebecca has supported media relations and strategies for large and small brands, including product launches, partnerships with key opinion leaders, video content creation and work with social media influencers. She enjoys garnering media results for her clients and most notably has done so in The Wall Street Journal¸ The New York Times, The Huffington Post, Allure, InStyle, Vogue and Elle.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

I find that a strong pitch, good research and creativity often lead to good coverage. Some of my best placements have come from creative ways of reaching the reporter and letting them know I’ve read their other stories and have a relevant source for them to speak with on a topic that they would be interested in. Equally as important to the relationships I have with reporters is the persistence it might take to foster a new relationship.

Sabrina Wottreng, Publicist, Sabrina Wottreng Public Relations

My Communications Background

Sabrina Wottreng is a publicist and PR coach that helps small businesses, startups and experts earn consistent media coverage. With a focus on media relations, Sabrina earned more than 400 placements for her clients in 2017.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

Know your story — It is essential for any expert or business to hone their story before reaching out to media. Your story makes your relevant, interesting and newsworthy for a journalist or producer. Ask yourself — What makes me different from my competitors? Why can I do this business better than anyone else? How does my background relate or not relate to the business? Are you a scientist turned fashion designer? Are you a stay-at-home mom running a Shopify empire? Those are stories people want to read.

Have your media assets ready — It is essential to provide journalists media assets to support your interview and article. Do you have a professional headshot, hi-resolution logo, photos of your team and professional product photos? These assets can take an interview to the next level and make the article more sharable. It is a rare day for a journalist to meet you in-person and take photos.

Reach out to journalists covering your competitors — see your competitors in the news? Reach out to the journalists covering them. Introduce yourself, your business, and explain why your product/service is better, different and more interesting than the company they covered. This will put you on the journalists radar for upcoming stories related to similar topics.

Alex Greenwood, Principal AGPR

My Communications Background

AIex Greenwood is a PR Strategist, Marketer, Crisis Communications Advisor, Speaker, and Writer. He is Principal of AGPR in Kansas City, Missouri, which helps clients worldwide manage their brand image.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

Getting coverage depends on three things: 1. Make sure it’s really a story. A new hire (unless it’s a celeb or CEO) is not generally a story, neither is your fancy new website; 2. Pitch the right reporter — there’s nothing worse than pitching an entertainment reporter about a healthcare policy story; 3. Package the story for the reporter when you pitch — describe potential visuals, interview subjects, etc. to help them visualize what covering your story would look like. Bonus: No means no. If the reporter passes, don’t be annoying. Move on!

LWPR

My Communications Background

I have worked in digital marketing and communications for more than 10 years at leading American brands such as Under Armour eyewear, Hobie Polarized, Baggallini, Karen Neuburger, Reem Acra, Judith Leiber, Tumi, Hickey Freeman and Hart Schaffner Marx. My experiences as a magazine editor, in-house PR executive, and as a public relations consultant gives me a unique perspective of the needs and nuances of the media. Having worked both sides of the PR fence, I understand the fine art of balancing press demands with client needs.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

After many years of experience securing press coverage for brands with limited budgets, my top 3 tips to get quality press coverage for your client are the following:

1. It’s all about customer service. Media need you to assist them to find a way to include your client. With all of the industry cuts, journalists are wearing multiple hats and are overtaxed. Providing them with with quick answers or a quote for their article, high quality imagery or product to be delivered for their photo shoot makes them a hero and you an important part of the process. This type of assistance will ensure that they call you first when they are working on a feature.

2. It’s about relationship building. The blogger who is just starting out might end up being a top writer at the Huffington Post in 6 months. Treating everyone from the smallest to the largest in circulation and media views with respect and fairness will go a long way to securing quality press coverage for your clients in the future.

3. Be creative. Look for ways to insinuate your brand in events and philanthropic activities so that the client remains top of mind and familiar to the press. Seek out like minded brands to collaborate with. An example of this could include a mattress company for a sleepwear brand. Another might be a women’s shelter that would welcome loungewear for the women staying there.

Ria Romano, Partner, RPR Public Relations, Inc.

My Communications Background

Multi-degreed former journalist turned Managing Editor who was recruited by a top agency into the field of public relations. As a result, extensive agency background managing multiple accounts in different industry sectors — both B2C and B2B. Founded the boutique agency, RPR Public Relations, Inc., in 2003 to specifically focus on the PR & Marketing needs of startups and small-to-medium sized companies.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

The best way to secure great media coverage is to painstakingly customize a very brief 4 to 5 sentence email pitch. Be sure to spend time on creating the perfect customized short subject line for each media outlet, spell the journalist’s name and media outlet correctly in the body of your pitch — if you don’t you’re headed to the trash. Take the time to learn the journalist’s beat and read a few of their past articles. It’s better to send 10 well-crafted customized pitches per hour rather than attaching your generic pitch to a spammy email list and clicking send. Your clients will thank you for this when you deliver multiple PR placements each week. Also don’t overlook Twitter. Many journalists and influencers do not mind receiving a 1 or 2 sentence pitch via Twitter with an attached graphic. Twitter is a great pitching back door as unsolicited emails have become as intrusive as phone calls.

Dave Struzzi, Founder, Fame Arcade

My Communications Background

Dave Struzzi is an authority on marketing and public relations strategy and tactics. He is a published author and his book, App Store Fame and Fortune, was among the first-ever to explore mobile app marketing. Located in New York City, Dave is a published author, entrepreneur and has worked with dozens of high profile and emerging brands in the technology, lifestyle, entertainment, and non-profit industries.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

1. Timing is everything when it comes to launching a product or service. Most businesses forget to give themselves an adequate launch ramp, which is the 3–4 weeks before a product goes live when they should be creating media lists, deciding on pitch messaging, creating anticipated Q&A documents, conducting pre-briefings and more. Aside from adhering to your own internal timeline, brands should remember that writers have their own deadlines and getting them to stop, pay attention to your pitch, hear you out and put together a story could take weeks instead of days. A consumer product brand that wants to get positive press around Mother’s Day (May 13) should be starting the pitch process in early April, for example.

2. Offer more than just a hard sell. When it comes to pitching press, there is a tendency to just focus on what your product does or why it’s the best. Writers care more about what the product means for the industry and specifically what it means for their readers. Brands should keep in mind that reporters are tasked with viewing products through a critical lens, cutting through the hype, and avoiding the perception of cheerleadering any product. Most reporters will need to put your product in context of competitors and spotlight the strengths and weaknesses of each offering.

3. Offer relevancy regardless of your brand. Some brands make the mistake of only reaching out to writers when they have a new product to promote. Communication with press should be an ongoing commitment, where brands continually understand what writers are working on, offering to help provide commentary, and sharing their own network of contacts with writers. Successful press strategy should be a long term investment, with the goal of selling your brand and executives as capable of providing useful insight.

Robert Barrows, President, R.M. Barrows, Inc. Advertising & Public Relations

My Communications Background

R.M. Barrows Advertising & Public Relations is a full service advertising and public relations agency, in business since 1980. Our experience includes handling the advertising and PR for large and small businesses, large and small budgets, and local and national accounts. We are very good at getting coverage for hard and soft news.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

Top 3 tips: 1) Contact the appropriate writers and editors by phone. 2) Follow up with written materials highlighting your news. 3) Follow up by phone and or email, and always contact them to thank them for their interest in your story.

Steve Turner, Principal, Solomon Turner Public Relations

My Communications Background

Steve Turner is award winning public relations professional with clients throughout the United States. His firm, Solomon Turner PR, has been named One of the Top PR Firms in St. Louis for nine consecutive years by Small Business Monthly. Steve is the founder of ThePRchannel.com a site to help young PR professionals and students learn the nuances of gaining media coverage for their business and clients.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

1. Research, research and research your potential media targets. Study the publications, blogs, TV/radio outlets etc. that could be a good fit for your client. Study the publications for their editorial emphasis and focus. Then study the specific journalists most likely to write about your client’s industry. Many writers have beats that cover certain industries. Spend some time to see what those writers like to cover and then craft your pitch and message accordingly.

2. Include a dynamic headline in your email subject line. Since most contact with the media begins with an email pitch or news release, you need to make sure your email subject line is news worthy if not dramatic. Journalists get hundreds of emails and pitches a day. A good subject line can make your release stand out from the pack. It can also pique the interest of the writer or recipient so they are anxious to read the rest of the pitch or release and learn more about your client’s news.

3. Maintain client readiness. A journalist may call any time day or night wanting to talk to your client. Your client needs to be trained to handle these calls and clear their schedule if necessary to respond to media requests. TV news especially can change hourly. If you have timely news your client may be called on to comment in an hour, two hours, or early the next day. They may only get one chance to go on camera and need to be able to respond quickly and professionally. A prompt response, with good insight on the subject matter, builds trust with both the audience and reporter and opens the door for future appearances.

Kelly Taylor, Founder A LA KET PR

My Communications Background

ÀlaketPR is a multidimensional public relations firm founded by Kelly Taylor. Her established history in public relations consists of overseeing the development and implementation of public relation programs for the following emerging and established brands: Brookstone, Bubi Bottle, Equinox Fitness Clubs, Luli Fama Swimwear, Out of Print Clothing, Rise & Hang, RUBR Watches, S’well Bottle and ZINGARA Swimwear.

Through strong media relationships, Kelly has garnered consistent brand or service exposure within favored and top-tier magazine publishing houses including Bauer, Conde Nast, HEARST, Meredith, Rodale and Time Inc; with broadcast opportunities including Access Hollywood LIVE, Steve Harvey, CNN, HLN, E! News, FOX & Friends, FOX Business, The Rachael Ray Show and TODAY.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

I was trained to secure top-tier media during the era of blogs…when blogs were taking off and bloggers were the new editors. I believed most bloggers were influential in boosting our client’s visibility and bottom line; however, I did not trust the process. There’s security in sending products for review to editors; an unbiased approach to coverage that will not be followed by advertorial or …this post reflects receiving complimentary gifts . I started my own agency to be sure that my idea of ‘good media coverage’ followed my original philosophy: stick to the credentialed sources.

My top three tips to securing media coverage includes:

1. Listen to your client. If your swimwear client believes their visibility on a news website is a priority over a fashion well story in a glossy print publication, then aim for the digital coverage. I pat myself on the back for glossy print (I pine over sheets of pulled coverage in my portfolio); however, your client celebrates the coverage they deem appropriate for their brand. While an online placement is easier to secure, it doesn’t mean it is of less value to you.

2. Take a page from a rom-com…channel your inner crazy ex-girlfriend! Put on your stalker cap. Most media databases do not include a writer’s contact information. It’s up to you to check their social media platforms, LinkedIn, online resume (I have connected with several writers by finding their curriculum vitae with the inclusion of a personal email address online), etc. Basically, act as if the union will make or break your career. Lovesick emotion is the new fire under your seat to secure press!

3. Manifest. Believe it and then you’ll see it. I create small vision boards for each client. I include the press outlets that we desire to see coverage on/in. I stare at the logos of TV networks and print magazines. I spend hours on the platform’s social media pages. I record segments on my DVR. I manifest and digest the content, as it influences a stronger pitch/follow-up correspondence. You find yourself speaking their language and bridging a relationship with outlet contacts.

Linsey McNew, Boss, Communications Consultant

My Communications Background

Publicist to public and private companies across multiple markets and channels, contributor to the gig economy since 2005, words dealer

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

(1) Read whatever publication you want to be in, (2) Read about the writer you want to speak with (3) Look for the holes in coverage where your client can be a valuable, ongoing source and pitch those as thoughtful story ideas

Susan DiMezza, PR Manager, The Integer Group Midwest

My Communications Background

With over 30 years in PR, I’ve worked at large agencies and smaller boutique firms, pitching everything from dog food to legal services, and working with clients that had big dollar allocations, to those that had make-something-from-nothing budgets.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

I remember literally shaking when I was learning how to make media calls — and I got yelled at by the best of the best. That’s how I learned — (1) to be succinct, (2) respectful, and (3) how to translate my pitch into one that will pique their writing interests. These days it’s even easier to research influencers/reporters so that you can speak to their beat — the more you know about them, the better response you’ll get.

Rafe Gomez — Co-owner, VC Inc. Marketing

My Communications Background

Rafe Gomez is the co-owner of VC Inc. Marketing, a provider of multimedia sales support content creation and PR for organizations around the world. Rafe’s work has been featured in a variety of media outlets — including CNBC, Entrepreneur, StartUp Mindset, Marketing Profs, PR Weekly, MSNBC, and Fox News Channel. In 2017, he was honored as the Best Sole Practitioner of the Year by Bulldog Reporter’s Stars of PR Awards.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

The first step in generating press coverage for your business is creating a news release to send to journalists at relevant media outlets. Unfortunately, most business owners forget the news part of the news release, and they look at the media outreach effort as an opportunity to sell, rather than inform. They also don’t infuse a reliable and professional voice into their release, and they fail to share information that’s unique, exclusive, or interesting.

Another misstep that businesses make when crafting their news releases is to take a more is more approach to their word count, and try to wedge as much detail as possible into their story. This is a huge no-no and is extreme off-putting to journalists, who are seeking to get the point of a news release as quickly and easily as possible.

Bottom line:

1. When crafting a news release in an effort to get press coverage, be more like CNN, and not like QVC. Focus on sharing noteworthy information that’s useful to the marketplace, and avoid the breathless hype that will prevent you from getting attention from a credible media outlet.

2. Seek to attain the three C’s of effective news release writing: clarity (avoid buzzwords and confusing references), conciseness (convey your message as tightly and briefly as possible), and convincingness (don’t exaggerate, hype, or engage in puffery — be honest and credible).

Gisselle Guillén, Public Relations Manager, Fabled Films Press

My Communications Background

Gisselle Guillén is a publicist and media relations professional. She currently handles PR for Fabled Films Press, a children’s entertainment company, based in NYC.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

Top 3 Tips to Get Good Media Coverage:

o Research. Research. Research.

Mass mailings are sometimes inevitable, and may result in good coverage. However, more often than not, you will end up with pay-for-play opportunities that lie outside your client’s budget. This ultimately is a waste of time. Focus your outreach on organic coverage. Organic press usually resonates more with consumers in the long run.

o Be sophisticated when curating your media lists, and then pitch accordingly. Get to know your contact’s beats as well as possible. This will help you develop the appropriate tie-ins, offer product samples when needed, and cultivate the correct follow-up strategy.

o Always have a follow-up strategy. Your initial pitch may not grab your contact’s attention. Therefore, always have a topical follow-up ready. This can be a brand launch, a Q&A from a team executive, and/or a twist on your original pitch. Don’t be afraid to throw out new ideas — most great freelancers, writers, and editors will appreciate your creative input.

Jamie Hannah, Co-Founder, Funbully

My Communications Background

Jamie Hannah is the Co-Founder of Funbully, a PR agency that specializes in helping disruptive brands tell more extraordinary, more provocative stories and have more fun in the process. Prior to co-founding Funbully, Jamie spent a decade managing PR programs for brands like The Onion, Red Bull, Esurance and Blue Chair Bay Rum. She is based in Austin, Texas, where she is committed to consuming her body weight in tacos each month.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

(1) Dare to go out on a limb. I’ve encountered a million brands and individuals who are interested in drumming up media coverage for themselves. Far less of them, however, are willing to go out on a limb. For many people, having too strong of an opinion, or making too strong of a statement, feels synonymous with alienating clients, potential partners, etc. And, without a solid strategy in place, it absolutely can be. But the more willing you are — as an organization or individual — to thoughtfully and strategically challenge people’s ideas, habits, opinions and even invite a little healthy debate, the more media coverage you’ll get.

(2) No one cares how excited you are. If I had a dollar for every press release I’ve read featuring quotes about how excited or thrilled company executives are about the announcements they’re making, I’d be a wealthy woman. But the truth is, nobody cares how excited you are. Getting good media coverage relies not on shouting your unbearable excitement from the rooftops, but on relaying the unique purpose you serve. How are you helping people? How are you doing things differently than others in your industry? How are you solving unmet needs? What do you offer that nobody else does? That’s a good read.

(3) Don’t expect to get in the news if you’re not doing anything new. It’s called the news for a reason. The clients who see the most media success are the eternal entrepreneurs, no matter what size their operation. To earn good media coverage, keep creating new things, generating new ideas and pushing new boundaries. That is, keep people on their toes.

Jessica Lawlor, President and CEO, Jessica Lawlor & Company (JL&Co)

My Communications Background

Jessica Lawlor is the president and CEO of Jessica Lawlor & Company (JL&Co), a specialty communications agency focused on content management and creation, public relations and digital marketing. Jessica’s an accomplished writer, speaker and personal branding expert in the Philadelphia area. She blogs at JessicaLawlor.com about getting gutsy — stepping outside your comfort zone to reach your goals and live a life that makes you truly happy.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

1. Personalize your pitches. It’s so easy to write a generic story pitch and fire it off to as many reporters as you can, but this approach won’t get you very far (and it won’t make you very well-liked in the eyes of the journalists you’re pitching!). Instead, take the time to do your homework. Read the publications you want your clients featured in. Understand what journalists at a specific publication cover. Follow reporters on social media and interact and get to know them before you need to pitch them. And when you do send that pitch, make it personal. Explain why your idea is perfect for this specific reporter at this specific media outlet. Yes, this approach takes a lot more time, but the results will be much more effective, and you’ll likely end up with a stronger media placement to bring home to your client or company.

2. Give the journalist everything they need, but also give them space to do their job well. A good publicist knows how to strike the right balance between helping a journalist and hovering. In my initial pitches, I like to provide as much information upfront to help a journalist form their story, including a brief story pitch in an email, plus a link to a DropBox folder with supporting materials like photos, videos or additional documents. At this point, they sometimes have enough information to write a story from that information alone! I also like to be helpful in coordinating an interview or photo shoot if that’s needed. And then, at that point, once a reporter has expressed interest and is working on a piece, I like to give them space to do their job and shape the story.

3. Don’t be afraid to get personal and vulnerable. The media (and their audiences) relate to people and stories that are transparent, open and share not only successes, but also struggles. I’ve used this approach on my own blog and in my media pitching — I talk about the parts of running a business that suck, and let people know that owning a business isn’t always sexy (https://jessicalawlor.com/2017/06/things-that-suck-about-running-business/). As sadistic as it may sound, people enjoy hearing about challenges and struggles others face (something we all can relate to, right?), so this approach has rewarded me with blog readers who trust me and come back for more content, plus media coverage that has helped to boost my business. As an example, I shared part of this story in a pitch that led to a feature story on The Penny Hoarder (https://www.thepennyhoarder.com/make-money/career/freelancetoceo/).

Ann Noder, CEO/President Pitch Public Relations

My Communications Background

Ann Noder is CEO/President of Pitch Public Relations, a Phoenix-based boutique firm specializing in national media. Pitch PR has a distinguished reputation for helping startups and big brands land significant media coverage with print, broadcast and online press.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

One pitch doesn’t fit all — to land successful media coverage, you have to tailor your angle depending on the media outlet and reporter. An angle for a business reporter should be completely different than the one for a parenting editor. Just as important is keeping your pitch short. Keep it simple, don’t tell your whole story — just get them interested!

3 Key Tips:

1)Timing is critical. What about your pitch makes it a story NOW rather than six months ago or six months from now? Timeliness is everything. Find ways to make your story angle resonate as relevant. That could mean it ties into a current trend, has seasonality or is brand new.

2)Release the release. Press releases should be created for important announcements, such as the launch of a business, a major partnership agreement or other significant business and financial milestones. A pitch is a less formal form of communication to the media that offers up a story idea tailored to a media target for possible editorial coverage. It’s a more effective method to getting featured.

3)Offer up content! It’s not what the media can do for you, it’s what you can do for them. If you’re an expert, author, business owner, etc., you naturally can provide expertise which can be valuable to various media outlets. Online outlets especially love to feature byline articles or top tips for their readers. If you’re willing to put this together, you become a resource for the press. That content can link back to your company’s website or product for added publicity.

Michael Stover, Owner, MTS Management Group

My Communications Background

Founded in 2010 by music industry veteran, Michael Stover, MTS Management Group is more than just an artist management/publicity/promotions company…It is where INDIE artists get MAJOR exposure! Specializing in full-service artist management, publicity and promotions, radio and social media campaigns for new and established independent artists and indie labels, MTS Management Group and MTS Records are on the cutting edge of today’s new music business. In just 7 years, MTS Records has released 31 Top 40 New Music Weekly country chart singles, including ELEVEN #1s and 8 Top 85 Music Row chart singles.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

Having worked in the music business for more than 30 years, including the last 10 as the owner of the award-winning MTS Management Group, I have worked with many artists in achieving good media coverage. I have several go-to tips when it comes to getting that good, hard-to-get media coverage. 1. Have an interesting angle — there are so many musicians, songwriters and artists out there, that you must have some kind of unique angle that makes you different from the others competing for the same coverage. Once you’ve found that angle, define it clearly and polish it, so that anyone you pitch it to will understand what you’re trying to put across. 2. Get organized or Hire a professional — many outlets only want to deal with someone who is an industry professional. As a publicist, I know the best way to approach, the most professional tactics to pitch your story, and I won’t let things slip through the cracks. Organization is really key. If you let things fall by the wayside and don’t send in items that are required by the outlet, then you will not be selected for coverage. 3. Always Follow Up — I can’t tell you how many times I’ve spoken with an outlet, and they’ve shown interest in my clients, only to have them go on vacation, or get busy with other projects. If not for following up, I would have lost the coverage. It’s taking the time to go back and connect with a previous contact that makes all the difference. It can mean getting the story or not.

Jordan Barnes, Senior Director, Brand and Communication, Mercari

My Communications Background

Communications lead who gets things done. Runs PR and brand for Mercari, including all consumer, product and executive programs. Scrappy but strategic, a self-starter but a team player.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

1. The good ole’ fashioned way of doing things: RELATING to the PUBLIC. I think it’s too easy too forget the roles that each of us play in the media landscape. Relationships have to be mutually beneficial. Both sides, PR folk and journo, need to feel good about it the relationship and each feel that there’s a win on the outcome horizon. PR win: coverage that hits the key messaging high notes. Journo win: coverage that resonates, informs, engages. If it’s one-sided, it’s short-sighted. This won’t always be the case, but it should be the standard. It works for me. Why would someone care about this? should be consistently top of mind.

2. Be a human. Don’t be a robot. PR speak isn’t authentic and you can spot it from a mile away. Of course, you need to protect your brand, but I think being human and engaging goes a long way these days. I don’t have enough fingers to count how many times in the last few years a reporter has said wow, it’s refreshing to see you interact with your CEO in a real way, not as a handler or puppeteer. Have real conversations, understand what makes reporters tick and what they’re passionate about. Your work will be SO much better.

3. Do your homework. Always. A little bit of preparation goes a LONG way in understanding how, when and why media respond and react to things. 9

Jenna Liberman, Co-Founder & Strategy Lead at Slow Down Co.

My Communications Background

From a young age, Jenna found herself drawn to the chaos of the kitchen, but quickly found she was better suited to stay out. As such, a career in marketing and communications was born. Jenna led Chicago-based restaurant group, One Off Hospitality’s public relations, marketing and programming for many years before launching her own branding and communications agency, Slow Down Co. When not talking about food, Jenna enjoys drinking mezcal, urban hiking and connecting people.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

1. Have an interesting story to tell. Good brands tell good stories, great brands show them. A good story coupled with a likable and human narrative goes a long way. If you don’t personally find your brand’s story interesting, it’s unlikely a journalist will either. If the existing story feels stale, develop initiatives, programming or products that inspires real human connection while driving your objectives forward. Be conscious of the crowded landscape and be sure to only pitch smart stories.

2. Foster relationships. At its core, media relations is based on relationships. It seems obvious, but if a journalist likes you they’re more likely to reach out when there’s an opportunity and actually open your emails. The best way to form such relationships is to do your homework and send pitches that are a good fit for the publication and on the journalist’s beat. I also send little love letters when a journalist I work with crafts something exceptional.

3. Reply in a timely fashion. The best way to garner ongoing press coverage is to respond to correspondence quickly. Everyone is under deadline, and having reputation for quality and speed goes a long way. Same thing is true for brands working with a publicist. Representation is only effective when clients are timely.

Kim Cox, PR Senior Account Manager, Domus, Inc.

My Communications Background

Kim Cox is a media relations expert, securing coverage throughout her career in top-tier outlets, including Forbes, Wall Street Journal, New York Times, Huffington Post, Wired, Mashable and U.S. News and World Report, among others. Her clients have ranged from bootstrapped startups to Fortune 100 companies. She currently resides in the City of Brotherly Love with her dog, Penny.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

The most important thing to do before you pitch is research. I know, PR is supposed to be this glamorous industry filled with beautiful people that should be able to sell water to a well — and it is (jk). But, there’s a ton of work done on the back end that is not sexy or fun that will increase your probability of quality coverage tenfold. Conduct research to determine what questions your audience is asking (or even better, what they should be asking), and then use your understanding of the client to help answer the question, How does my client solve X problem for Y customer? And there’s your pitch.

Many people will say that maintaining good relationships with the press is a way to get good media coverage — and they’re right. But developing those relationships is hard work. It takes one good pitch to land a good piece of coverage. However, it takes one bad pitch to be written off, and many, many good pitches to earn the trust of just one reporter. You’ll get pressure from bosses, clients and colleagues to hound reporters until they respond. Maintain your own integrity. Only send valuable, newsworthy, forward-thinking pitch ideas. Seriously, stick to your guns on this one. It will pay off in the long run.

Finally, it’s important to understand what constitutes as good media coverage can be subjective — that is, if your client doesn’t recognize the value in something, is it still good? They’re the ones paying the bills, after all. When you get a hit you’re really proud of, step back and ask yourself if the coverage aligns with your client’s business objectives, messaging and positioning. Is the overall sentiment positive? Are you reaching a target audience? If it checks all the boxes, present it to your client in a way that details its value. PR is widely misunderstood, so good coverage can present a teachable moment for your client, but you have to be the one to recognize that opportunity and run with it.

Kyn Fellows, Publicist, Kennedy Rowe PR

My Communications Background

My name is Kyn Fellows and I’ve been a publicist for about 7 years now specializing in lifestyle PR. In July ’16, I launched Kennedy Rowe PR and have grown to represent an array of clients under the lifestyle umbrella including fitness trainers, fitness studios, interior designers, architects, chefs, boutique stores, beauty bars, mobile apps, and more. As a new-age millennial publicist, I have (gratefully) been making great progress as a rising business owner and would love to give you some insight on what has worked for me with clients…

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

1) As we continue to shift into a digital media era, it’s important to incorporate content marketing as a part of your strategy when introducing yourself to the press. Whether an entertainer, lifestyle expert, service, or product — people want to find you as a solution to some problem in their lives — one they may not even know they have yet. Having practical and compelling tips, commentary, advice, or unique uses for whatever it is you offer will distinct you from your competition.

2) Make your content easy to use and share. Many people don’t have the time to read a drawn out article or watch a 20 minute vlog on your website. Keep everything short, sweet, and to the point and make sure it is embedded so people can easily stream it on their social media to get more clicks and reads for you.

3) Offer an incentive or something that feels slightly exclusive to each media outlet you are talking to. They tend to not favor reporting on the exact same topic as one of their competiting media outlets or networks. For example, if you have a book — sharing different excerpts to different outlets makes the news slightly different. If you have a fashion line, maybe a sneak peek before its launch, an exclusive live stream on a media outlets social channel, or even a special gift/discount for that medias readers or viewers could be something that will gain more interest from the press for coverage.

4) Make social media a priority! In todays world, many businesses still underestimate the power of social media. When you have an active social media channel that provides a clear energy of what your brand represents, it makes people have a deeper understanding of the business in a short span of time. Some of the best collaborations and media coverage come from people perusing social media and finding something that aligns with their interest. Establish a presence on social media and it will only open more doors for you in traditional and non-traditional media coverage.

Doreen Clark, Director of Public Relations, SmartBug Media

My Communications Background

Doreen Clark is the Director of Public Relations for SmartBug Media. She has more than a decade of experience helping organizations, across industry, increase visibility, build credibility and promote thought leadership through strategic and targeted media relations.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

Tip #1: Don’t become Blinded by Shiny Objects: What I mean by this is that every organization wants high circulation/readership. Why wouldn’t they — since the more people that subscribe the more potential there is for eyeballs on their expertise, their company name and insight from their thought leaders. However, numbers are not everything. As a PR professional, I always recommend a good mix of high readership outlets with a healthy dose of targeted trade outlets. After all, if the article gets lost in the clutter and doesn’t truly hit your ideal customer, the effort is futile.

Tip #2: Make the Most of Relationship-Building: PR takes time, mainly because, as a PR professional, we are in the business of networking. We look for quality and repeat business, it’s not a rush job. I always advise to look at the outliers, not just the reporters and Editors. Look at the bloggers, freelancers and podcasters. After all, a freelancer has a relationship with many outlets; therefore, one solid connection can result in numerous articles, in various outlets, over time.

Tip #3: Create content. Share Content: We live in a digital age. Most organizations have some form of content from blogs to ebooks to infographics to videos. The content is a great doorway to initiate contact with a reporter and it will give a leg-up. After all, they need something to add to their article, from links to videos. Not only may an organization’s content be included within an article, forwarding content may spur a whole new interest in a topic for an Editor. When a PR professional has an arsenal of content at their disposal, it shows expertise and helps to break the ice.

Jennifer McDermott, Communications Manager, finder.com

My Communications Background

Jennifer McDermott manages PR for personal finance comparison website, finder.com. Beginning her career in her native Australia, she has since lived and worked in Europe, Britain and now, the United States. Throughout her 12 year career, Jennifer has consulted on public relations strategies for some of the world’s largest brands across financial services, e-commerce, retail, entertainment, travel and lifestyle.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

My top 3 tips to getting good media coverage come down to following 3 T’s: topical, timely and targeted. In PR there are a number of stories that we call ‘evergreen’ in that there is no urgency to them, they could run at anytime but in the same case, they often only get picked up during slow news weeks. Being topical, that is ensuring the story you are trying to pitch relates to hot button issues, will give you a great chance of cutting through the clutter.

Next, you have to ensure you are timely. If you are news-jumping an issue of the day, you have to do it fast before that story moves down a reporter’s list of priorities. Keep timeliness in mind also when responding to a reporter who has shown interest. They are on deadline so you’ll make their lives a lot easier, which may put you in good graces for next time you pitch, if you respond to any questions as quickly as possible.

Finally, ensure your pitching efforts are targeted. With such a broad media landscape it can be tempting to want to blast out a press release to as many contacts as possible but if it’s not relevant at all, you may find your pitch and any future emails sent straight to spam folders. When trying to land coverage, research who covers that area, find out the type of stories they write and tailor a pitch to them accordingly. They may not want to run your story this time, but they will most likely appreciate you personalized your approach and will be more open to future ideas.

Liz H Kelly, Founder, Goody PR

My Communications Background

Liz H Kelly is the Founder of Goody PR in Santa Monica, California, who focuses on Magnifying Good primarily for successful small business clients in the US (some international) with recent stories in The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, NPR and more. Liz loves to develop a powerful story that turns a boring topic such as taxes into something exciting and relevant for the media. Kelly is also a Best-Selling Author, and teaches Digital Media Marketing at UCLA Extension. GoodyPR.com

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

My top 3 tips to Get Good Media Coverage include 1) Create a Powerful Story, 2) Make It Easy for the Media and 3) Follow-up Consistently.

1. Creating a Powerful Story is by far the most important thing to get good media. Without a clear, concise and compelling story, your pitch will go nowhere. To make your story even stronger, focus pitches on people positively impacted by the client versus making it about a business. Your story needs to move people. Pitches about how the client helped someone improve their life are best.

2. Make It Easy for the Media by providing a short bio in every pitch for your client with their name, title, URL, previous media experience and your contact information. And if a reporter gives you a time for an interview, go out of your way to respond quickly and try to make that time work. Making an interview process easy for the media will build relationships and result in more repeat interviews. They have enough to worry about with so much breaking news so make everything easy for them!

3. Follow-up Consistently in a way that is not needy or desperate. The minute you sound too desperate, you may lose the story. The media is overwhelmed by hundreds of daily emails, and your challenge is to break through the noise, build a relationship with the reporter, and get the story over the finish line for your client. And lastly, don’t forget to always thank the media for their story, and share it on social media with their Twitter handle. Most media do not get enough appreciation, and gratitude goes a long way!

Denise Dorman, Media Relations Director, WriteBrain Media

My Communications Background

Solopreneur WriteBrain Media founder Denise McDonald Dorman is an award-winning writer, journalist, editor, TV/video producer and author, so she approaches publicity work with understanding both sides of the desk. Occasionally she represents literary talent. As a geek, wife and collaborator to #1 Star Wars Artist Dave Dorman, Denise can be found exhibiting at comic book conventions worldwide, including San Diego Comic-Con Booth #4500 every year.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

To get good media coverage, these are my three favorite tips:

1. Know your media contacts. Show them the respect they deserve. This means knowing how they prefer to be contacted. Understand what they write about or produce. Be relevant. Research their articles, interests and beats, past and present. Freelance writers often cover diverse topics and genres; your single pitch could help them with writing a Wall Street Journal article and a regional small business article simultaneously. Part of knowing your writer or producer is knowing how to make their life easier. Become their most invaluable resource. Never force them to dig for your client’s information. Have a comprehensive, digital media kit prepared for them. Anticipate their needs. Be responsive. Provide them with everything they need to craft a great story, including compelling images and multimedia.

2. Be a lifesaver. If you are like me, you’re what Malcolm Gladwell coined, a connector. Journalists and producers will treasure you as the invaluable resource who can readily connect them with subject matter experts, no matter how obscure, especially when they are up against looming deadlines. Your Rolodex of subject matter experts is your currency. Invest the time in networking and nurturing it. When the media needs a fast answer, yours is the phone number they should remember first.

3. Pitch with passion. I always fall a little in love with my clients — in a non-romantic way — and that comes through in my pitches. I become their best cheerleader and advocate, emotionally invested in their success and media coverage. If I can’t feel passionate about a client or their subject matter, I would be doing them a disservice by taking them on, and that would get telegraphed in my pitches in some subliminal way. In those rare cases where I don’t connect with a client, I tactfully refer them on to my publicist friends whom I know would better serve them.

Bruce Serbin, Owner/Publicist, Serbin Media, Inc.

My Communications Background

I’m Bruce Serbin, founder and publicist at Serbin Media, Inc. (www.serbinmedia.com). I specialize in creating national media campaigns for authors, entrepreneurs and experts. I’m the author of 30 Reasons The Media is Ignoring You: Deathbed Confessions of An Award-Winning Publicist. (www.serbinmediabook.com) I am also a former journalist who started my career working in TV news.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

1. Serve as an expert source: Stop making your media outreach an advertisement or sales pitch. Instead, focus on your area of expertise and position yourself as a source for journalists to explain what’s happening in your field. The media is looking for tips, insights and actionable items that will help their viewers, readers or listeners understand a topic.

2. Be a thought leader: If your message is the same as 99% of what’s out there already, why should the media focus on you? Say something different, take the other side of an issue and don’t be afraid of controversy. Position yourself as a thought leader, not a thought follower, and you’re going to stand out from the crowd and attract the media.

3. Keep pitching new angles: Publicity is a process that takes time and is often filled with rejection from journalists. Keep coming up with new and fresh angles and don’t give up. Sometimes you have to play with different angles, say things in a different way or just change your approach entirely until you figure out what works best. It takes time and persistence.

Caitlin Copple Masingill, Public Relations Director, Oliver Russell

My Communications Background

Caitlin Copple Masingill brings more than 10 years of experience in strategic communications, cause marketing and public affairs. A former journalist, she currently works with purpose-driven organizations from members of the Fortune 50 to sustainable tech startups at Oliver Russell, a certified B Corporation.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

1- Don’t send long or irrelevant pitches. That seems obvious, but ask any reporter and they’ll tell you it’s not. Get to the point and cut through the chatter of his or her inbox by only sharing items that are actually newsworthy with journalists. Think about what really qualifies as news. Create a checklist with news values like timeliness, novelty, and impact to see if your item passes the smell test. If it sounds like PR, it probably is!

2 — Don’t spray and pray. There’s no point in sending out a massive press release to everyone and their mother. Do your homework and send only targeted pitches to 30–50 best-fit reporters, maybe fewer. That means emailing journalists who have a track record of actually covering news like yours.

3. Don’t trust your software. Many PR databases include outdated information on reporters. There’s nothing more embarrassing than getting a reply saying that Jack retired in July, or that Julie hasn’t covered education since 2014. More likely, if you don’t cross-check a reporter’s beat, you won’t get a reply at all!

4. Don’t call reporters. There may be exceptions out there, but rare is the person who prefers a phone call to a succinct email, or once a relationship has been established, a text message.

5. Define what qualifies as good coverage. If you are working with clients, this is particularly important so that everyone’s expectations are aligned. Is it share of voice, sentiment, or reaching a particular decision-maker who could facilitate an acquisition or policy change? I ask clients to give me their top 3–5 dream publications, as well as some they would consider more realistic. Identify key thought influencers who maybe aren’t journalists but who are shaping the conversation about your cause or brand in social media.

I’m happy to talk through your PR challenges. Tweet me at @caitlincopple or email ccmasingill@oliverrussell.com.

Josh Rattray, PR Manager, Matchbook Creative

My Communications Background

Josh Rattray spent 10 years as a publicist and content creator for some of the biggest brands in college athletics.

He was a communications contact for Butler University when the school made back-to-back appearances in the men’s basketball national championship game.

He now works for a full-service strategic agency in Indianapolis.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

1. Make A Simple Introduction

Dozens of articles each day are published touting the ‘Best Way To Pitch A Journalist.’ To each their own, but we have to remember in many cases we’re simply emailing somebody. A good way to get on the radar is to make a simple introduction. Ask an outlet what they need and how you can provide value. I sent a quick intro note to some national outlets for a chocolate bar client and every single one responded. In the end, we’re all people.

2. Find The Value You Provide

In some ways, journalism hasn’t changed. If it bleeds, it leads. Today, they simply have a better way of measurement: page views. Clicks and page views drive an overwhelming amount of editorial decisions. Find a way to demonstrate how your news will drive value for the outlet. If you can show someone how your news will generate clicks and shares — how big is your client’s social audience? — you’ll have a good chance at commanding attention.

3. Be Able To Create The Story

Having the versatility and skillset to contribute to a story is important. ‘I’d love to cover that, but how can I get video?’ With the abundance of smartphones and high-quality recorders available and affordable now, a publicist needs to be able to properly answer that question. I was once telling a TV sports anchor in a small market 2 hours away about my client’s event. He was interested, but couldn’t get there. I used my iPhone 6 to interview the subjects and take a few minutes of simple b-roll. I sent the video files to the outlet and a segment with my iPhone video ran twice.

Stephanie Tan, Senior PR Manager, Influenster

My Communications Background

Stephanie Tan is the Senior PR Manager at Influenster, the product discovery and reviews platform that enables consumers to find new products and get advice to make informed purchases. She leads the media relations and communications strategy at Influenster.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

Getting good media coverage is not just about great storytelling, but about strategy and timing surrounding your pitches as well. If you know a writer prefers to clear his inbox in the morning before working on assignments, reach out to him then. If you know a producer has the habit of checking emails after a long day of shooting, make sure that you connect with her in the evening when you have her full attention. Some editors even prefer texting to emailing. Paying attention to such details goes a long way.

Timeliness is everything. If there is an influx of industry coverage on a topic that is related to your brand’s planned announcement, ride the wave and use that as a hook to explain why your product or service is making an impact within the context of that news cycle.

Stay on top of not only what journalists across different verticals are writing, but also what they are looking for in their coverage. Keep up with them on social, over email, and in person. By keeping your conversations with them alive, you will be top-of-mind when they a looking for a source, trend or insight for stories they are working on. That way, you can anticipate the coverage even before the news breaks.

Melissa Klein, CEO and Founder, Melissa Klein Communications

My Communications Background

Melissa Klein is the founder and CEO of her own consulting firm that specializes in media strategy and positioning and has advised technology companies such as YouTube, Imgur and Codecademy. Prior to starting her own practice, Melissa served as Fab.com’s first SVP of Global Communications and spent 6 years at LaunchSquad as an SVP, where she advised tech darlings such as Evernote & Eventbrite and spearheaded the viral PR campaign for the ‘Obama Girl’ series. Melissa began her career as a lobbyist on Capital Hill and holds a Masters Degree in International Finance from the Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS).

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

When advising my clients on what makes for a great coverage I always emphasize three things.

First and foremost, think in terms of story, not in terms of news. I always cite Steve Jobs when giving this advice. He was a master storyteller and that’s what endeared him to the press and to his customers. He wove every new product launch into a master narrative. We invested our time (and dollars) in Apple because of this.

Secondly, be authentic. Authenticity is the key to great coverage. Don’t spin and don’t try to be something you’re not. Reporters and their readers are smart. They’ll see right through it. And, oh, if you’re in a crisis situation own the mistake, offer a solution and move on. Don’t get defensive.

Finally, be topical. I’m constantly being asked, How do I secure coverage without any news? My answer is always look at what’s happening in the world and have a perspective on it. When I was advising the creator of the YouTube hit Crush on Obama , we mapped out content that matched major news tentpoles. For instance, we released Super Obama Girl! on Super Tuesday so that we could be part of that narrative. It worked. Part of being topical is also having a point of view. Don’t be afraid to have an opinion, even if it’s contrarian. Say something meaningful, don’t just regurgitate your own marketing materials. No one cares.

Jess Tiffany, C.E.O., Marketing and Networking University

My Communications Background

Entrepreneur, Author, Marketer

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

Gaining media coverage can be a challenge. One method to gain media attention is to follow media writers on twitter, figure out which #hashtags they use that are also relevant to you. They may just see what you are doing and contact you. A second method is to be where they are, perhaps go to an animal adoption event that is being covered and wear a cat costume. The point is you must stand out and be worthy of notice. Engaging with the writer online would be my final suggestion. Search for everything they write, comment on posts, like the posts and send a personal note about how much you love what they write. If you are genuine overtime that person may warm up to you and even ask you to be in a piece.

Neta Yoffe, Director of Marketing, TMP Worldwide

My Communications Background

By day, Neta heads up Marketing & PR for the largest recruitment marketing firm, overseeing strategic global marketing and communications. By night, Neta pitches her cooking skills to friends and family by whipping up delicious and nutritious recipes in the kitchen.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

1) Be authentic & honest — Oprah just told us that speaking our truth is the most powerful tool we all have. If your pitch is genuine, people will want to talk to you.

2) Be different — what’s the one thing that stands out in your product/company/service that your competition doesn’t have or isn’t as strong in? Push it, pitch it, promote it.

3) Be the buzz — it’s so easy to send emails to journalists and hope you have a good pitch that they want to hear more. What if you took it to another level? Have a VR press event. Do a 360 live tour of your restaurant. Make your pitch experiential.

Rachel Fukaya, Director of Detroit, Barokas PR

My Communications Background

Rachel Fukaya helps companies develop creative marketing and PR strategies that deliver business impact, drive authentic brand loyalty and earn coverage in meaningful ways. From Coachella Music Festival to Ello to Tome Software and Techstars, Rachel has helped brands across industries tell their stories.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

1.) Getting good media coverage isn’t just about relationships anymore. Relationships might get you the meetings but it won’t get you the coverage. The companies and products that get the good coverage have a brand that is both genuine and unique, a spokesperson who is clear and relatable and tell a story that resonates with the right audience.

2.) Less is more when reaching out to media. Instead of blasting 100 reporters, spend that time crafting personalized, unique and short messages to 10 best fit reporters. I’ve tried both approaches and the latter always gets better results and better coverage.

3.) Don’t just reach out to media when you have an announcement. Read what those 10 best fit reporters are writing about and send them a note when they’ve written about something that relates to your business/product/industry. Helping to draw connections between what they’re currently covering will help ensure they understand your business, product and the industry you’re in when the time is right for coverage.

Shruti Shah, Senior Account Executive, Pollock Communications

My Communications Background

As a passionate and ambitious public relations professional, I’m enamored by all sides of food and media. Outside of managing multiple accounts at a NYC-based agency specializing in food and nutrition, I also oversee PR & marketing efforts curate influencer events, and contribute content for Bitches Who Brunch, a popular lifestyle blog.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

1. Always do your research when building a media list. Read past articles from journalists to ensure it’s in line with what they regularly cover. This also includes checking bios on LinkedIn to ensure it’s the most up to date contact at a particular outlet.

2. Personalize your pitches to create an ongoing relationship. This doesn’t just mean addressing their name but also compliment any past articles they have written so they know you value their work.

3. Be pithy. Use catchy subject lines to get reporters to open your email. You can have the most well-written and interesting pitch in the world but if no one opens your email, it’s useless.

Samuel Scott, Keynote Marketing Speaker and Columnist, The Drum

My Communications Background

A former journalist​, ​newspaper editor, ​​and director of marketing in the high-tech industry, Samuel Scott is now a marketing and technology contrarian. He speaks at conferences around the world and writes The Promotion Fix column for The Drum. Scott is based out of Tel Aviv, Israel.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

First, realize that it is not about you or even the journalist — it is about the publication’s readers. Journalists and bloggers want to publish things that their subscribers and followers will want to read and share. The key is to position your company or product in a way that is relevant to the publication and will interest their readers. Research the publication as well as any specific writers that you will target to understand what will truly interest them.

Second, journalists love anything that is newsworthy. Usually, your company or product will not be newsworthy in and of itself — it is not the job of reporters to promote you. What is newsworthy are things such as studies, contests, or tie-ins with current issues or popular culture. Try to do a credible study, run an exciting contest, or incorporate the popular topic or movie or the day in a way that relates to your company or product.

Third, think of a big idea. So-called content marketers spam journalists and ask them to mention, link to, or share something that a company has produced. Professional publicists, on the other hand, encourage reporters to write about an idea with which the company can help by providing resources and information. The difference is crucial to understand.

My speaking videos:

Yuri Cataldo, Principle, ArtTechMedia Group

My Communications Background

Founder and principal at Art Tech Media Group, Yuri Cataldo works with and advises tech, cryptocurrency, and creative companies on PR, marketing, product launches, and customer engagement. His efforts have resulted in 6 figure launches, 7 figures worth of free press for founders and products, and multiple awards for his clients and companies. In addition, he is a frequent guest lecturer on PR, entrepreneurship, and innovation at Yale, Princeton, Stanford, Notre Dame, and numerous conferences.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

1. Do your homework.

Journalists are busy and while ever more than ever they need your story to fill deadlines they don’t need a bunch of random topics sent their way just because they work for the media outlet you want to get into. Spend time reading their past articles and create a list of journalist that actually write about your topic. When you concisely and individually pitch them you can mention that you’ve read their articles and why what you’re pitching relates to topics they write about. It takes extra time but the personal touch is always well worth it.

2) If a Press Release is your only PR tool, you’re doing it wrong.

I hope that I am not the first person to tell you this but no one reads or cares about your press release. Rather than take the lazy way and just send one out use it as a reference tool in your press kit. In your well researched and succinct personalized email pitch include a link to a press kit full of useful information. Headshots, Bio’s, company background info, and your press releases should be in this folder that way journalists can use it as a reference if they need quotes or more information which saves them time and helps you get published.

3) Start local and build out.

Unless you’re already a big deal large media outlets are not going to care about your project as much as the local press will. Once you have a good reason to pitch reporters start with your local newspapers, TV stations, and bloggers. They all love stories of local companies doing cool things and are easier to access than reporters at large media outlets. All you need is one good feature to get the ball rolling and show that your story is credible. Once you get it reference it in your pitches to reporters at larger media outlets. Keep repeating the same process every time you get a new feature and work your way up the chain.

Sarah Sherwood, publicist, Sherwood Communications

My Communications Background

Along with a successful tenure at Stanford Hospital & Clinics, Edelman Worldwide and Ruder Finn, Sarah Sherwood has been promoting organizations in the well-being, science, and medical industries, and working with top scientists and innovators for over twenty years. Her success and creativity in the field has won the confidence of colleagues in Chicago, Washington, D.C., and the San Francisco Bay Area.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

1. In order to be successful at gaining effective media coverage, you must be good at engaging the research: knowing your client exceptionally well; knowing his/her business extremely well; knowing each reporter who covers your area well and knowing the environment where the issues are important. This takes time and thought. In other words, you never want to move without doing the research first.

2. The steps to good media coverage are research, planning, execution and evaluation. Make the most of each of those steps and you have a good quality campaign that will appeal to journalists. Insist on developing a communications plan so that it will add discipline to your process and ensure that your campaign makes sense.

3. Finally, you have to have a good story in order to achieve good media coverage. It isn’t just about contacts — it’s mostly about the story at the end of the day. Researching who in the media will care about the issues you are talking about is critical. So many in communications call reporters blind, without understanding what they cover and why. So spend time finding out as much as you can about who you are calling before you pick up the phone or send an email.

Rhonda Rees Owner Rhonda Rees Public Relations Company

My Communications Background

Rhonda Rees is an award-winning PR expert, author, speaker, advocate and Publicist of the Year. She is the author of the acclaimed book, Profit and Prosper with Public Relations: Insider Secrets to Make You a Success, and has been featured in the Wall Street Journal, the Harvard Business Review, and on the Fox News site.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

As a long-time publicist, I have found that best way to get media coverage is to create a stellar press release that has a great subject angle or hook . It’s also a good idea to put together a tailor-made media list to distribute to the appropriate audience. Follow-up in the form of good media relations is also very important to help secure coverage. Tying something into the headlines, or by offering a unique perspective, or even creating something original will help to grab the media’s attention.

Making use of web based wire services is also a good idea. Examples include PR Web, PR Newswire and EIN Presswire. Many of them also distribute the information to the Associated Press, and provide analytics reports as to where they gave coverage. A free service is PR Log. It’s also very important to market this by posting the media breaks to a website or blog, or by sending them out through social media.

Another excellent idea is to make use of the HARO (Help a Reporter Out) free service. I have often submitted information for clients, colleagues and myself. This is quite an immediate and effective way to get the word out, and to also obtain the coveted media space. This service has credible people including reporters, journalists and producers who are always looking for good sources to help them with their stories.

Gwen Elliot, Co-Creator of TheMediaMethodProgram.com

My Communications Background

Gwen Elliot is the Co-Creator of The Media Method. She’s a former producer for the Oprah Winfrey Network in Canada. She’s helped entrepreneurs get featured in Forbes, The New York Times, Cosmopolitan, Virgin, Seventeen, TechCrunch, MarketWatch and more.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

#1. Pitch to a medium where you’re at your best.

Where do I start? This is the first question I hear from clients who have felt unsure of how to begin pitching to the media. With podcasts, television shows, magazines, online shows and so many more opportunities it’s easy to be too overwhelmed to start. I recommend pitching a medium that excites you or where you feel that you could be at your best. So if you hate writing, don’t pitch a column. If you thrive under pressure and bright lights, go for TV.

#2. Get clear on your ‘ideal customer’ before pitching media.

When working with a new client, I get clear on their ideal customer before reaching out. This way we can reverse engineer what their customer listens to, watches, reads etc. and ideally find more amazing customers. If you have dream customers right now, be transparent and let them know you want to find more customers like them and ask what media they’re currently consuming.

#3. Say ‘thank you.’

Journalists, writers and producers appreciate gratitude. I was a TV producer for many years, and it was shocking how often guests did not follow up to say thank you for the experience and the exposure. Ideally you build a relationship with producers and journalists, not just appear suddenly when you need their help.

Alyssa Baker, Founder, RIOT Media Group

My Communications Background

Quickly making a name for herself by her ability to push brands to the next level in the ever-changing media landscape, Alyssa founded RIOT Media Group out of a passion for brand storytelling. From working with fortune 500 companies to start-ups, the diversity has allowed Alyssa to develop key relationships with top tier media, influencers, thought leaders, industry experts and more. RIOT focuses on consumer brands in the beauty, fashion, health, wellness & tech space.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

Media coverage is simultaneously harder and easier than ever before. With the rise of social media, transparency has made it easier for more people to find contacts, while those contacts are being bombarded with thousands of emails a day that don’t even make sense for them. To cut through the noise, we focus on three things at RIOT -

1. Make the story relevant — whatever it is you’re pitching, tie it to a broader story. Even though you think your product is the best thing ever, chances are an editor won’t. If it’s not actually news or cutting-edge in any way, tie it to a larger cause.

2. Offer an exclusive — relationships with the media go two ways. Editors are not here to plug your client in whenever the client wants (contrary to popular belief lol) and publicists are not here to send editors free gifts all day for the heck of it. If your client has a product that is truly cutting-edge, chances are editors will want to write about it. Seek out the best fit and offer that outlet an exclusive.

3. Foster relationships — personal connections are everything. If you can, try to get an introduction to the editor you would like to talk to if you don’t know him/her. It helps tremendously!

Maree Jones, Content Strategist, Luckie & Company

My Communications Background

Maree Jones established a niche in specialized hybrid positions in her career, blending data analysis with a razor-sharp intuitive approach to social media, content, influencer marketing and public relations. She currently manages social media channel strategies, public relations initiatives, content marketing and influencer outreach for some of the top brands in the US. Maree is also a writer, commentator, contributor, speaker, forecaster, facilitator, and teacher.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

If you follow three basic principles, you’re going to get tremendous media coverage every time you pitch:

1. Have something that’s newsworthy. This is a tough one for many publicists and companies because it requires an honest look at every announcement coming down the pipeline. Not everything is news.

2. Find more than one way to tell a story. A press release used to suffice, but with today’s technologies, there are so many more interesting ways to tell your story. Whether it’s with visuals or even through social media support, don’t rely on one medium to share your news. Grab your audience’s attention in multiple ways.

3. Focus on building relationships. Top publicists know that in order to secure more coverage with a writer, reporter or publication, it helps to have a relationship there. If the only time you’re talking to journalists are when you need something from them, it’s going to be more difficult to build a relationship.

Erin Richards, Founder, Hype PR

My Communications Background

After many years working for the CBC as a publicist to some of the network’s top talent, Erin launched her own communications firm, Hype PR, which currently works with a wide range of clients; consulting with startups (Knixwear), large brands (Roots), film distributors (eOne), as well as directly with a number of high-profile athletes, actors and personalities looking to build a personal brand. She writes for Social Media Today, has been a speaker at a number of conferences and a panellist in the Soho House series on, ‘How To Pitch Media’.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

1) Personalization is key — Individuals seeking media coverage on behalf of a company or an individual should research and personalize each and every pitch that is sent to a member of the media. It is essential to know if the outlet has previously covered the client (or one of their competitors) and this information can be woven into the media outreach to indicate that you have a solid sense of what the reporter might be interested covering, and how that might relate to what you are working on.

2) Timing is everything — When planning pitches to media, try your best to keep the various deadlines in mind for certain types of media, and plan far enough ahead to attempt to mirror their editorial calendar when sending suggestions for coverage. Have a product that would be perfect as a Father’s Day gift? Pitch short lead media a couple of weeks prior to the holiday in mid-June, and magazines up to four months ahead of the date in question.

3) Get on Twitter — Twitter is a platform that journalists love — and if you are paying attention, you’ll often find well-known journalists putting calls out for sources for various story ideas that could be a fit for one of your clients. Of course, you should also put a great deal of effort into building real relationships with media offline, serving up ideas and being useful even when you have nothing to gain. It will all pay off in the long run, when they remember your name when your next email shows up in their overly crowded inbox.

Cindy Hamilton, Founder, Kickstand Communications

My Communications Background

A veteran of high-profile, high-pressure agency and brand environments, Cindy is a Chicago-based communications pro and partner to people and projects who inspire us to move more. She connects with story-tellers via traditional media relations and social engagement to ensure compelling, inspiring content is not get lost in today’s high-speed consumption environment. Cindy, via her consultancy Kickstand Communications, has supported brands such as the Bank of America Chicago Marathon, Nike, adidas, Target/Soulcycle, Facebook, Abbott World Marathon Majors, From Fat to Finish Line, and more.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

Take it Personally: Taking on the responsibility of telling a brand’s story is significant — take it seriously. Representing a company to press, and deciding how its story is told, requires emotional attachment. This can mean some discomfort in the face of inevitable refusal, so gird your loins.

Read Everything (and Pay for It): It is irresponsible (and disrespectful) to ask a journalist to consider your pitch without a clear understanding of the work product of the journalist, and the outlets publishing the journalist’s content. At the same time, support journalism. Pay for subscriptions.

Think Like a Journalist: Pitch emails should be succinct and compelling. Spend time on the subject line — think like a copy editor and craft a cogent, brief headline that explains the story. Write in the style of the journalist’s content and prioritize this piece of the process — spend time to make your emails sing! https://www.entrepreneur.com/video/297255

Mike Onorato, Executive Director of Publicity, Smith Publicity

My Communications Background

Mike Onorato manages a publicity staff of more than a dozen professional publicists and directs client relations and media strategy for more than 80 clients. He has worked in the publishing industry for more than 15 years, the majority of that time spent at Wiley, where he was Associate Director of Publicity and worked with bestselling authors including Kirk Douglas, Jim Moore and Wayne Slater, Dr. Ruth, Tedy Bruschi and Jack Cafferty. Major media placements include The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Fresh Air , The Oprah Winfrey Show , Today , Reader’s Digest, AARP and Salon.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

1. Have a unique story. You have to standout from the crowd with a unique angle. Middle of the road doesn’t cut it. Take a stance and be proud of that!

2. Be accessible. You are the expert and you know your subject matter the best. If your publicist lines up interviews or article opportunities, you need to be able to deliver on them and quickly. The early bird DOES catch the worm.

3. Contract with a good publicist. Your publicist is your team and they are your microphone. Be sure you have a good one and knows your goals, works towards them and knows quality over quantity!

Janet Shapiro, Senior Publicity Manager, Smith Publicity

My Communications Background

Over 25 years of experience working in public relations, business development, human resources and marketing in pharmaceutical, healthcare, device, non-profit organizations, with C-Suite level expert cultivation campaigns and authors with diverse disciplines. With a mission to provide top senior-level public relations counsel to corporations and non-profit organizations, she has worked both independently and with teams of other senior counselors on a variety of client matters including company, personal branding and book publicity. High-profile media placements including features with MSNBC, CNN, FOX , TIME, USA Today, US News & World Report, Time, Washington Post, New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Chicago Tribune, O, The Oprah Magazine, Elle, People, Family Circle, and Steve Harvey.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

1. Don’t shy away from controversy or a controversial stand. A strong opinion backed with facts and expertise will get reviewed and used.

​2. Be on top of news trends and timely angles where you can add your expertise. Media holds onto your expertise in that area of expertise and will reach out if not for that story but another. Evergreen topics you can discuss and keep at the forefront of reporters hits a home-run time and time again with national coverage.

3. Know your key messages for branding purposes. Think of what your 3 key hashtags you would like to leave with media. Clean, unique and simple messages hit home in publicity and are repeated.

Michelle Barry, Founder, Mesmerize Media Consulting

My Communications Background

For the last 15 years, Michelle has developed and executed creative, high-impact public relations programs for global startups, public companies, nonprofit organizations and private corporations of all sizes. Her clients have appeared in the pages of USA Today, The Wall Street Journal, New York Times, People Magazine, and hundreds more. National television outlets such as Anderson Cooper 360, The Doctors, CNBC’s Squawk Box, The Katie Couric Talk Show, Bloomberg TV, and the Today Show have profiled Michelle’s clients.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

Tip one: Get to the point. Journalists are busy and don’t have time to read long fluffy emails or waste time chatting on the phone.

Tip two: Make sure what you are pitching is valuable. This is often the most challenging part of the job. It needs to answer the classic Who, What, Where, When, Why and How. If it doesn’t it’s not news.

Tip three: Follow through. That means do what you say you’re going to do, for your clients and for journalists. There are too many PR hacks out there who make a lot of promises knowing they’ll never deliver. It’s tarnished the industry.

Tip four: Time is of the essence. Make sure you have the full story, images, client bio, references- everything a journalist could want — ready to go when you pitch. This is key for broadcast media opportunities. They’ll want to see video clips of your client to judge how they come across on camera.

Sandra Nomoto, CEO, Conscious Public Relations Inc.

My Communications Background

Sandra Nomoto is the CEO of Conscious Public Relations Inc., an award-winning virtual PR agency which has helped socially and environmentally responsible companies and events gain traditional and social media exposure since 2008. Conscious PR was the fourth PR company in Canada to achieve B Corporation certification. They are also a member of 1% For the Planet, and LOCO BC.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

1. Relationships — Even though traditional and legacy media may be falling by the wayside lately, you still have to build relationships with the new media outlets and the individuals who work there: Online magazines, podcasts, bloggers, and influencers/influencer agents. Have good relationships with the outlets in which you plan to PAY for stories. Because there’s going to be increased competition among outlets, even for paid stories.

2. Know pitch preferences — Not everyone loves an e-mail pitch anymore — Many no longer use news releases. Use Twitter, LinkedIn, even text message, Instagram DM, Facebook/WhatsApp messenger, or Snapchat — IF you know that the person prefers pitches via these methods. I don’t know many folks who respond to phone calls or voice mail, but some still appreciate a reminder call a few days later, especially if their e-mail inboxes are full.

3. Video — Good promotional or even b-roll videos significantly increased our clients’ chances of gaining coverage in the last few years. Not only are videos a must for TV, but they can also easily be embedded into a blog post, especially if they support your news pitch. With Smartphones having the capability of high-resolution videos, there’s no excuse for not having a video — you don’t need to hire a pro anymore to have good footage.

Cynthia Salarizadeh, Founder & CEO of Salar Media Group

My Communications Background

Founder and CEO of the Salar Media Group, a PR firm focused on enhancing the image of cannabis, Co-Founder of Green Market Report and Publisher of the Cannabis Trend Report. Cynthia is committed to improving the perception of cannabis for better market conditions. She holds a degree from the University of Pennsylvania and a certified in Political Journalism from Georgetown.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

1.)Create a focused and clean list:

Arguably, the most important part about pitching a writer and having a successful shot at gaining press coverage is beginning with a hyper-focused contact list. This list must be relevant to your topic with writers and editors that cover the beat specifically. Without a solid list, you are essentially wasting your time. If you are pitching a topical for pain, be sure to seek out retail and health & wellness writers. If it is new sneaker, find retail, fashion & sports writers, etc. Your list is your foundation. If you can afford a good database list service, I recommend Meltwater and or Cision. This will give you an advantage that is necessary for success in PR.

2.)Build Relationships with the Writers:

After building your contact list, send an email out to your writers to introduce yourself and provide a run down of your client list and what each client covers and a brief description of how the products work and if their are thought leaders attached to the company that can be utilized for quotes in the future by the writers. If you are doing your own PR for your own brand, the same applies. Introduce yourself and be clear as to how you can help the writer and what you are seeking. If you get to know your writers, they will be more inclined to open your emails and consider you. Relationships are the foundation for everything in life, but when seeking press coverage, it is absolutely key.

3.)Pitch your story with detail but keep it short and sweet:

Writers receive hundreds of emails a day. Be sure your subject line is snappy, to the point and attention grabbing. Once the writer opens the email, be sure you say everything you need to get across in the first paragraph. They do not have much time for lengthy, long-winded stories. Give them the nuts and bolts, and then if they are interested they will email you back and request more information. You can always attach a longer pitch to the email so they have the opportunity to read more if they are interested. Short and Sweet is the trick in a pitch. Writers appreciate you respecting their time.

These three tips will give you the best shot at garnering press coverage.

Christina Daves, Founder, PR for Anyone®

My Communications Background

Christina Daves is a visibility expert. Through her company, PR for Anyone® she shows people how to generate exposure for their business. Christina is also the author of the bestselling book, PR for Anyone™ — 100+ Affordable Ways to Easily Create Buzz for Your Business.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

I teach a 3-phased Get Famous Formula to attract and pitch the media.

Step 1 — Be Newsworthy

Being newsworthy is a simple as outside of the box thinking. Here are some tips to create newsworthy story ideas:

1) Take a national trend or study and show how it relates to the local market.

2) Niche what you do and pitch around that. You might be a business coach but what do you do differently than anyone else?

Step 2 — Create Great Hooks

The hook is your subject line. It’s how you get the journalist to read your email pitch. A hook is as simple as what you see on a magazine cover.

Step 3 — Find the Right Journalist

This step is vital because you don’t want to send your story to the wrong media contact. It’s all about finding the right person to pitch. Use Google. Google is a question search engine, Who writes about [topic] for [name of publication]. Locally, you’ll usually get their name, email, and phone number all in one search. Nationally can sometimes take a page or two of digging but they will be there.

By putting these three steps in place when pitching the media, you will be light years ahead of your competition and you will stand out to journalists.

Brittanie Clement, Principal & Founder of BCENE Public Relations

My Communications Background

As the founder & principal of BCENE Public Relations, Brittanie Clement enjoys an extensive background in public relations and influencer marketing with a focus on consumer and lifestyle brands. Brittanie’s PR acumen and award-winning work with Sassoon Salon North America, Girl Scout Cookies, Mamont Vodka, OLIKA, and Washington D.C.’s regional airports have landed her regional & national recognition as one of 2018’s Most Brilliant PR Experts Under 30 and the Emerging Leaders Award for Washington Women in Public Relations.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

1. Do Your Due Diligence — Editorial calendars are released every year for major publications. Taking the time to review carefully, source content and mold the pitch into what editors are covering is a sure-fire way to open a line of communication and potentially land a solid story.

Plan ahead for announcements, as many editors and reporters work within set editorial cycles with extensive lead times of up to 4–6 months in advance. Use this time to build authentic relationships within your network and combat a lapse in coverage by shifting into influencer marketing with consumer products, services and lifestyle content plays.

2. Freelancers Are Your Friends — Freelancers are a solid bet for placing a product or news story in the right hands. While editors and beat reporters are always on deadline & inundated with hundreds (if not thousands) of email pitches, freelancers are often on the hunt for new content & can bend the ears of editors better than a cold pitch could. Researching the freelance writers in your space, reading their recent stories, connecting with them directly, and answering the so what? in the first line of a pitch is a tried-and-true media relations strategy.

3. Play the Long Game — Concerned your announcement has not been covered by the media yet? Take a look at your industry & put in realistic timelines & expectations in place.

If the announcement is truly newsworthy and the right reporter is in place, we often see quick pick up and turnaround with business & financial stories due to the time sensitivity and nature of the financial market.

Earning good media coverage is one part of the content marketing ecosystem and a continuous exercise in building brand awareness. Any PR expert worth their salt will not readily guarantee media coverage. However, with a calculated understanding of both the industry and the editorial landscape, a good publicist can guide the conversation toward the likelihood of coverage and the timeliness of story procurement.

Michella Chiu, Director of Brand Marketing at GREAT WINE, Inc.

My Communications Background

Michella Chiu is the Director of Brand Marketing at GREAT WINE, Inc. She plays a crucial role in managing the company’s strategic plans in marketing, public relations (PR), and sales. Companies Chiu has worked for successfully gain publicity in important media outlets including Forbes, Entrepreneur, monster.com, and U.S. News & Report etc.

Chiu went to Columbia University for her M.A. in East Asian Languages and Culture (History track) and Princeton University for her Ph.D. in History.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

1. Different groups of audience needs different messages. So, make good use of digital marketing makes personalization easier. GREAT WINE, Inc.creates different key messages for each groups of target audience. For millennial, the company emphasizes on affordable everyday wine, with additional classes on vinotype. For generation X and Baby Boomer, it highlights the concept of vinotype, wine tasting, and wine lessons. Because messages present a product in such a way as to get the attention of, and be understood by, the specific people or groups they want to reach, the company tailors the message to each audience. Therefore, as a company that value personalization,GREAT WINE, Inc.spotlights the uniqueness of each audience group.

2. Be ready to change for the market. The market will tell you what it needs, and the key to success is to be ready to change your branding message — after all, taste does change over time! For example, when GREAT WINE is founded in 2015 in both the USA and China, it was one of the few companies in the industry that successfully caught the changing tides of the Chinese market. Chinese young professionals now prefer affordable wines with traceable origins, and stop chasing after high price tags. By introducing the possibility of comparing tea flavors of pu-erh and jasmine to wines, GREAT WINE carries the mission of introducing the traditions and innovations behind Californian labels to the global market.

3. Think about event marketing and omni-channel marketing. We invite clients to come to our tasting room for the total experience because this also gives us a chance to talk about the ideas behind our wine labels. We discover that clients introduce business partners to us because they would like to share their enjoyable moments with others. This is why we adopt the omni-channel marketing methods. Customers learn about a product via omni-channel marketing, a multi-path experience that seeks to provide the customer with a convenient and seamless shopping experience whether the customer is shopping online, by telephone or in a bricks and mortar storeas a tool to communicate with customers. This method provides a seamless, consistent, and convenient communicating channel between the company and customers. Omni-channel marketing creates 1:1 experience between the company and customers.Our wine specialists and even our CEO are just few clicks away from clients. As a result, GREAT WINE, Inc. successfully builds brand awareness and connects personally with customers.

Alyssa Carroll, Communications Strategist, Alyssa Carroll LLC

My Communications Background

Alyssa Carroll is a communications strategist based in Los Angeles, obsessed with helping inspiring, rebellious, and creative entrepreneurs and brands tell their story. With over seven years of experience, she has worked in-house for notable startups like the Thrillist Media Group (Group Nine), Quirky, and Wink, and has partnered with a range of brands including Buzzfeed, Samsung SmartThings, Dollar Shave Club’s MEL Magazine, Apartment Therapy, and more to help founders and brands reach the people they care about.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

One of the most important things a company can do is understand why they’re doing press and what they want to get out of it. Start by asking who is the ideal audience? Is it investors, consumers, or thought leaders? Potential new hires? Do you want brand awareness or to support sales? Once you have a sense of goals, you can reverse engineer your news or story and tailor a campaign based on these priorities. Establish what outlets your identified priority audiences pay attention to, what writers are covering these kinds of topics and what they care about, and how your announcement might fit into the larger zeitgeist. Spend the time to research other stories that might be similar to your own, what your macro and micro competitors are talking about in the media, and determine where your story can add a new perspective. An hour of research can avoid weeks of ‘throwing spaghetti against the wall’ and seeing what sticks, and approaching the right contact and outlet for your desired audience is the best path towards a story that will be both impactful and productive.

Deidre Woollard, Co-founder, Lion & Orb PR

My Communications Background

As a real estate publicist, I’m passionate about real estate, its intrinsic connection to personal happiness, and its value in the health of communities. I’ve worked with some of the biggest real estate brands in the world as well as some of the innovators in the field and have achieved placement for companies, agents, and properties in CNBC, Wall Street Journal, Mansion Global, Barrons, Robb Report, Town & Country, Architectural Digest, The Hollywood Reporter, Los Angeles Times, Curbed, and more.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

If you don’t read outlets and don’t support the work they do, then you shouldn’t ask to be in them. I find opportunities for my clients by reading and knowing what people are writing about, what they cover and, more importantly, what they never cover. When pitching, try to showcase the people behind the story. A new office or new product isn’t just the story of a building or a technology, it’s the story of the people who are involved. By nature we are drawn to hearing about other people, their triumphs and struggles, the things that make them relatable. Part of finding your angle is to dig deeper into your own why and how the news won’t just help you get press or grow your business but how your story and your news might actually benefit someone else.

Gene Caballero, Co Founder, GreenPal, Inc

My Communications Background

Gene Caballero is co founder of GreenPal which has been described as Uber for lawn care. He is has been an avid writer since 2014 and earned his MBA with an emphasis in Finance and Economics. He enjoys playing piano, being outdoors, and anything food related.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

When launching into a new market, it is crucial for us to get media coverage. Without getting a mention in that local newspaper or on a local news station, it takes us 6 months longer to gain traction.

With these personalities getting so many emails and phone calls, you have to certainly differentiate yourself from everyone else.

When looking for the proper contact to email, almost all reporters have a bio about themselves. Favorite restaurants, hobbies, and even pets.

What I have found very beneficial is to send them a dog bone in the mail if they mention a dog. This will certainly get their attention and then they will be more likely to respond to your email or phone call.

This little technique has accounted for over 15 mentions in the local media and counting.

Its unorthodox but very personal.

Thank you for including us and our homepage citation in your article.

Shannon Pratuch, Owner, Scene Marketing Group

My Communications Background

Shannon Pratuch is a maker of checklists, Founder + Owner of Scene Marketing Group, and author-in-progress. Winner of Travel Oregon’s Outstanding Oregon PR Program & Initiative Award. With over 16 years of marketing and public relations experience, Shannon excels at project management, marketing, and public relations.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

Get to Know Your Outlet: The way you communicate with your best friend is wildly different than how you interact with your grandmother. Never treat each media outlet the same and NEVER use a template. Slow down and take the time to do thorough research. Identify their keywords, tone of voice, mission statements, brand style, target audience, overall trending stories, photography & videography style, and relationship and engagement style with their audience. Mirror these techniques and concepts back to your contact in your messaging in your pitch to show that you understand the outlet.

Provide Tools & Resources: Every outlet has a slightly different way they prefer submissions. Always follow those rules. Additionally, I try my best to go above and beyond whenever I can by providing valuable assets & tools. Include high-resolution photography and videography, even if it’s just examples, tip sheets & quick bullet points via PDF, supporting artwork, links and resources associated with the pitch, and anything else you can share to help provide an easy-to-write and access storyline.

Tell a Story & Partner Up: Be the best partner to your media outlet by putting yourself in their shoes. If this was your business, what stories would create the highest engagement or revenue for the outlet? Sometimes these articles and projects take a bit more time to research and assemble all of the pertinent information, but the result is a much stronger pitch. Bring in additional related partners and resources to help round out the storyline for other storyline opportunities. And always, always be honest, transparent, and trustworthy. Never over embellish your story. If you find yourself needing to exaggerate, go back to the storyboard and work the concept until you have a robust pitch.

Michelle Stansbury, CEO, Little Penguin PR

My Communications Background

Michelle Stansbury is the founder and CEO of Little Penguin PR, a strategic public relations company based in San Diego, CA. Michelle’s mission is to take the same resources that Fortune 500 companies use to build long-term brand value and reach their target audience through PR and provide them to small and mid-sized businesses to help them succeed. She was recently honored as one of San Diego’s 2017 Business Women of the Year.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

Option A: Conferences and Trade Shows are Your Biggest PR Opportunity of the Year:

All of your industry’s press and media outlets attend your big conferences of the year. Are you reaching out to the reporters to get coverage?

Step 1: Get a List

To get started, reach out to your conference contact and request the media list. Often this is available to sponsors or those who have purchased a booth. If you aren’t able to gain access to the official media list, you can build your own by tracking down the contact information on the publications’ website.

Step 2: Find an Angle

You need a story angle to pitch to reporters to get coverage at the conference. Check what big news will be revealed at the conference or what the main theme is. Use that as inspiration to come up with your own unique story angle that ties into a larger industry trend.

Step 3: Pitch the Press

About a month before the conference, email the reporters on your list with your story pitch and suggest an interview at the conference. Be flexible with your calendar as the media often has very tight schedule at conferences.

Option B: Create a PR Plan

If you don’t already have a PR plan, its time to treat your PR strategy like a newsroom and outline your content calendar for the rest of the year!

1. PR Doesn’t Just Happen — You might have heard someone say that they just created a great product or service and then the media attention came knocking at their door. I’m not saying that NEVER happens, but you can’t expect press to find you. Reporters are busier than ever so you need to reach out and help them find the timely story about your company that is relevant to their target audience. By treating your own PR strategy like a newsroom, you help make their jobs easier!

2. Build a Calendar — The first step to creating your strategy is to create an editorial calendar, just like the newsrooms do. Come up with 12 topics you want to talk about next year, and then pick one per month, outlining your communications calendar. In March it might be about tax season. Maybe you’re moving into a new office in June. Topics that don’t tie into a time period are called evergreen stories — place those in the empty months. Use this editorial calendar to direct your blogs, newsletter, videos, and press pitches for the year.

3. Now be Brutally Honest — Newsrooms are brutally honest places. If the story isn’t timely, it gets thrown in the trash. If the story is overdone, it gets tossed out. Look at your calendar and evaluate which of those topics are newsworthy? Figure out which topics are going to be interesting to your audience and which are going to be interesting to the press. Its okay if not all of your topics are worthy of a press pitch, but be upfront about that and turn it into a blog or newsletter instead. Questions to ask:

• Is it TIMELY?

• Does it have a UNIQUE PERSPECTIVE?

• Does the HEADLINE grab your attention?

• Does it ALIGN with your industry/business?

4. Determine Your Audience — For the topics that you do deem worthy of media attention, don’t plug and pray — the PR term for sending out the same pitch to every publication you can find. Instead, create a focus for the pitch. Perhaps it appeals to a niche industry publication, perhaps a financial publication, maybe the morning show on your local TV station. Decide who you’re pitching and who the audience is so you can craft a targeted and effective pitch.

Jackie Berlowski, CEO & Founder of GreatHerGood

My Communications Background

Jackie, the founder of GreatHerGood.com supports modern women in business through her community of influential entrepreneurs and public relations services. As a native New Yorker, Jackie has a diverse background in television production, public relations, celebrity booking, and marketing. Jackie’s expertise, media know-how and passion for entrepreneurs results in major PR power for growing brands.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

1.) Stick to an Editorial/Content Calendar. It’s all about consistent blogging and social media posts. When you post, think about adding quality vs quantity. Post valuable content that your audience can really benefit from, keep it relevant and post on a consistent basis. If your site, blog or social media hasn’t been touched in ages, some may question if you’re still in business or not. If you’re always adding your expertise and sharing valuable insights, editors are more likely to pick it up.

2.) Do Your Research. If you’re trying to land your own press, this takes serious time and perseverance. What media outlets are on your wish-list? Does it match up with where future customers may be? Is it best to target online, hard copy mags or TV…maybe all three? Be realistic in terms of what kind of press is right for your business and what can take you to the next level.

3.) Keep It Real. Be who you really are and share it with the world. There is only one YOU. What is your narrative? Does your business give back to a charity? When you share your passion behind your business, it creates trust and brand loyalty. Is your story one that others could relate to or learn from? People want to hear about it! Be frank about your obstacles and share your successes. How did your business change you? Take us on your journey and share your narrative. People can and will relate to THAT more than your products.

Cassie Galasetti, Co-Founder, Social Sidekick® Media, Branding & Public Relations

My Communications Background

Cassie started her PR career at one of the top firms in New York City where she securing media coverage for her clients on TODAY Show, Good Morning America, USA Today and more. Currently Cassie and her co-founder Theresa have represented clients under their media, branding and public relations company called Social Sidekick®, where she has landed coverage for her clients in the New York Times, Fox News, Playbill and more. Cassie was recently named a PR Boss to Watch by one of the top recognized Public Relations industry sourcebook, PR Couture, Glamour Magazine called her a #GirlBoss and included her advice in various articles.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

It all starts with doing your homework! It seems like a given but it’s extremely important to do your research, not only on who you’re pitching but the industry of your client. Then you can create a well-rounded story, which leads to the next tip. You don’t want to do the reporters job but it’s always a good idea to create a story that you would want to read yourself. Just showing off the product or service is not enough. Why is your client different, what’s the backstory? Create a compelling pitch that excites.

The next tip is to think like a reporter, give them plenty of lead time and provide them with the appropriate materials they need for their story, like a high resolution photos and downloadable video links. They will thank you! You also want to make sure you don’t forget to personalize your emails, don’t become that publicist who sends spam pitches.

And finally, don’t forget to touch base after sending your pitch. Just keep in mind there’s following up with a reporter and there’s annoying a reporter. Writers receive a slew of pitches every day so it’s important to not get lost in the shuffle. Send an effective follow up email, perhaps you have more information on the subject or new photos. Just make sure it’s concise (and you don’t send more than 2 follow up email). I can’t count how many times I’ve landed media coverage for my clients with just simply following up!

Alex Easland, PR Director, Ameba Marketing

My Communications Background

Alex is a strategic story-teller, serving the role as Public Relations Director at Ameba Marketing. She has extensive background in the fields of public policy, lifestyle, tech, non-profit, products and education. She has impressive media placement on a national and local level, throughout digital, traditional and non-traditional platforms.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

Good media coverage itself is becoming more and more challenging to define, as the media industry continues to change and adapt. While defining is just part of the problem, the other part is finding the coverage and securing the placements. In order to get good media placements, there are three things you can do.

Be ahead of the curve. I can’t tell you how frustrating it is to see an article publish that is a roundup of products/services, that you know your client fits into, but isn’t included in. Stay on top of those editorial calendars and don’t be afraid to reach out to a journalist after something has published to ask if they are willing to update their top list or product roundup. It doesn’t hurt to ask and provide them with the information they would need to do so.

Make those relationships. How many times do publicists, no matter how long they’ve been in the industry, have to hear PR is all about maintaining relationships ? We’re in the business of maintaining our clients’ relationships with their publics, as well as our relationships with prevalent media members. Stay in touch with those that are relevant to you, wish them a happy holiday, a good weekend, whatever it may be. And provide them information even when it may not be of benefit to you. Journalists, freelancers, products, whatever the role, they appreciate someone who makes their life easier.

Stay organized. Unfortunately, when you don’t have an established relationship with an editor or producer at the media outlet you’re trying to get coverage with, most of your job is about following up. Make notes to follow up in an appropriate and timely manner. While you follow up, research articles that have been written recently to continue to make yourself and your client relevant.

Inna Semenyuk, InnavationLabs

My Communications Background

Inna is a marketing strategist, social media speaker and creator who has worked with Facebook, Skype, Calm, Starbucks, Visa International, NBC Universal, Turner Broadcasting, Tribe VR, British Airways and many other established brands and startups. Inna is an alumna of Singularity University and San Francisco Chapter founder. She runs SnapchatDaily.com, a blog about best-kept Snapchat secrets for brands, and regularly speaks at conferences and events, including Mobile Innovation Summit, Startup Grind Global Conference and at Nasdaq Entrepreneurial Center. Originally from Russia, Inna lived in Moscow and London, now calling San Francisco her home.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

#1 Have a story! You might have heard that having relationships with journalists is key. Knowing people can definitely take you a long way but nothing works better than having an actual story to share with the journalist. Take your time to understand what stories journalists are looking for and how you can help. And do not waste journalists’ time with lengthy emails and press releases. Communicate the main idea in a few bullet points. Also, read The press release is dead by TechCrunch’s Mike Butcher if you haven’t yet. (http://mbites.com/2015/07/01/the-press-release-is-dead/)

#2 Research the publication you’re pitching your story to and find the right angle. When you’re a startup founder who truly believes in their product you might struggle to put yourself in other people’s shoes and think that your product is universally appealing, when in the real life you need to find the right angle that will be of interest to the audience of a particular publication. A publication that is read by end-users of the product might not be interested in how much money your startup raised while funding is the first thing top Silicon Valley journalists would be looking at as a part of your pitch, for example.

#3 Do not get discouraged if your pitch was not accepted — stay in touch with the journalist. There might be a better moment for your story int he future. Keep doing a great work on your product that will make your story even stronger and will make it speak for itself, generating attention from people (including media).

Chris Navalta, Founder and Publicist for Gametime PR Consulting

My Communications Background

Chris Navalta has worked in Public Relations for 20 years. He has offered counsel to professional athletes and tech CEOs. Prior to PR, Chris was a journalist in the San Francisco Bay Area.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

1) SELL THE HEADACHE … NOT THE MEDICINE — One of the keys to securing good coverage for your clients is to create a big-picture holistic story. Seems simple, but only if you are a big-name brand with a ground-breaking product. Too many times, brands (be it companies or athletes) are too hung up on the end game: being featured in a news segment or on the cover of a magazine … yet, they don’t know the path to get there. Sometimes even being a big brand isn’t enough to secure coverage. Instead of having the mentality of please cover my company/product/self, think more about why this is important to your audience. What is the problem out there that your company or product can solve and why is it in their best interest to pay attention?

2) DON’T JUST PITCH! BUILD RELATIONSHIPS — As a former journalist, I know that reporters are hit with dozens of story pitches everyday. While it’s fine to pitch them your story, reporters also covet relationships. Have an actual conversation with the reporter. Ask them out for lunch or coffee. Talk about what stories they’re working on. Working with the media should go both ways. It’s not just about what the media can do for you. And the end game should NEVER be getting the coverage. Think of ways to help the reporter as well and build an actual relationship. Once a bond is made between publicist and media, there is trust. And when there is trust, there is an increased likelihood that the reporter will then come to you regarding a story — as opposed to the other way around.

3) BE YOURSELF — Sounds like first-date advice, right? In the world of PR, this means be genuine, transparent and keep the buzzy buzzwords to a minimum. Media sees right through those words and they can only film someone saying innovation so many times. When telling that big picture holistic story, use past experiences as anecdotes. This will help connect with the reporter (and ultimately your audience). It sounds simple, yet hard to do. But if you come across as human to the media, the better chances you have capturing readers and viewers.

Aaron Blank, CEO/President, The Fearey Group

My Communications Background

Aaron is the CEO and President of The Fearey Group, a 37-year-old public relations firm based in Seattle. A Puget Sound Business Journal 40 Under 40 recipient, Aaron’s fearless personality sets the bar for his PR agency team as he challenges them to always think ahead of the competition. He consistently uses digital tools to create news for his clients.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

  1. Your story has to be compelling. Nobody cares about your anniversary or your company news unless it is rather interesting. Once you’ve identified your story, think of a unique to tell the story to get the media interested in your story.
  2. Instead of just an email to a reporter, create a podcast or a short video of your spokesperson with the compelling story. Then share that multimedia with the reporter to get them more engaged in your story.
  3. Media breeds media. Getting your story or byline article placed in a trade media outlet may not yield the most eyeballs. However, reporters use trade outlets for potential story ideas and topics. Watch your one story become two or three placements after you tell it once.

Brook Larios, CEO/co-founder, PlainClarity

My Communications Background

Brook Larios is a wordsmith with a quirky sense of humor and a do-gooder mentality. She owns PlainClarity, a boutique pr firm that connects businesses with those who will love and support them. She’s also a former journalist and continues to pen about food and culture, among other things.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

Anyone can find decent tips for securing good media coverage, but there are some ground rules for getting consistently good, meaningful coverage. The first : love people. Connect with them. Understand them. Authenticity is essential. Nobody’s just a number. Secondly, read, watch or listen to the media person’s work. Understand who you’re pitching and why. Finally, provide an unexpected, yet germane, angle rather than pitching the obvious and have the resources to aid the media person in completing their story.

Nate Masterson, Digital Marketing Manager, Maple Holistics

My Communications Background

I am a Digital Marketing Manager as well as a freelance Marketing Analyst. My specialties are SEO and outreach. I have worked with brands big and small in order to establish a significant online presence, particularly in the e-commerce sphere. mapleholistics.com.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

Tip 1 — Stand out from the crowd. If you’re doing things exactly the same way as other companies or other PR departments, you’re not going to get the kind of media coverage you want. If a similar, more successful and more popular company is curating the same vibe as you, they’re going to be getting the media coverage. Be original and be bold — if it’s been done before, you shouldn’t be the one to do it again! Tip 2 — Establish a brand identity. A lack of staff cohesion and marketing messaging can lead to a muddled, unclear message or picture of the brand itself. Marketing and PR departments need to be on the same page in regards to branding and messaging for the sake of consistency and in order to maximize effectiveness in campaigns. For example, tone and content should remain consistent throughout all of the social media channels and content hubs. Tip 3 — Interact with your audience. Media outlets are more likely to pick up on PR departments and companies that interact with and respond to customers. If you launch a new social media campaign and the replies and feedback are rolling in, respond to it! Let your customers know that there is a real person behind the screen who cares about their comments and concerns. Media outlets pick up on viral content, and you’re far more likely to go viral if you’re responding to your audience.

Bill Bongiorno, President, Blue Chip PR

My Communications Background

Founded Blue Chip PR 14 years ago and never looked back after 10 years on Madison Avenue working with top financial names. Written numerous articles on media and recently tried his hand at acting, doing background stints on an upcoming HBO movie staring Al Pacino and an episode of Showtime’s Billions.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

1 — Rehearse, rehearse, rehearse. Know what you want to see in print or on the video before talking to a reporter. Questions don’t matter, only the answers. Keep to your messages you want to get out. Quotable quotes get the ink and the attention. There’s always a more colorful way to say something that will stay in the audience’s mind. If curiousity killed the cat, boredom killed the viewer. People feel a connection to a story. Tell anecdotes and paint pictures with your words in the minds of an audience.

2 — Follow the news and fill the need. There’s more media than ever and the need for content is the never satiated monster. Feed it with your own insights and put a twist on the familiar. Lead, don’t follow. Times they are a changin’ sang Simon and Garfunkel, so stay ahead of the times. What’s going to happen next is what everyone wants to know. Working with public cannabis, fintech and blockchain companies gives us the leading edge in transformation. What’s next in your industry?

3 — Keep it positive and avoid the negative. Stay above the fray and don’t get sucked into the abyss of the day or year for that matter.

Stacie Krajchir-Tom

My Communications Background

Author, Founder of The Bungalow PR, Black belt at connecting the dots. Mama to Milo. Prior to founding The Bungalow, Stacie Krajchir-Tom worked as a television producer for 12 years. Her experience ranges from producing morning TV at NBC and working at Extra, where she produced style, fashion and beauty segments as well as red carpet celebrity interviews. Stacie is the author of two books published by Chronicle Books and has been featured in media outlets such as Forbes, The Washington Post, Smart Money Magazine, Real Simple, Design Sponge, Lonny and The Los Angeles Times. She is a regular on-air Lifestyle Expert and Contributor to Huffington Post.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

Top 3 Tips to Get Good Media Coverage

Build authentic personal connections

We live in a digital world and while it certainly simplifies many aspects of our job, now more than ever it’s important to find ways to create personal connections both online and in person. You can do this in a variety of ways — from attending events and introducing yourself to editors; stay away from pitching your client at events and instead use this opportunity to get to know media on a more personal level , be conversational and weave questions into your conversation that find a common interest and use that knowledge down the line when you pitch that editor or producer. Follow editors on social media. Instagram is a great way to get a sneak peek into what their personal interests outside of work maybe an editor loves baking and so do you or she is headed to Mexico and your family vacations there each year -offer to send her your local list of favorite spots. Engage with those you feel a real connection with and after following each other for some time, and exchanging direct messages, this will eventually lead to an in-person OMG so excited to finally meet you! or at least she will recognize your name in a pitch. The more personal connections you can have with editors, producers, writers the more likely you are to be considered as a source for an upcoming story. When an editor includes your client in a story, send a thank you note or at the least write an email — everyone appreciates a gesture of gratitude.

Know who you are pitching

As a former television producer, I can’t tell you how many publicists would pitch me products or experts that didn’t fall under my morning show beat at all! Before you pitch an outlet, be familiar with what the editor covers and what topics they have already written about — you can also use having this information to your — if there was a particular story you enjoyed, include it in your pitch, let them know. It’s one more thing that will make you stand out from the rest.

Goodwill leads and connections

There are many times that my client may not be a fit for a story but , I know a handful of other brands that would be perfect source. I am a firm believer in paying it forward….everyday I share leads and do introductions with journalists and founders of brands or with fellow publicists that move the needle forward in some way for either party and lead secured pres. Sometimes just being kind and sharing opportunities get you the placement down the line.

Write a really solid yet catchy headline

Now that no one really picks up the telephone anymore, editors are inundated with emails — so this is one of those moments when the whole you have 10 seconds to make a first impression is really true. I love when I read an email subject line and it really tells me most of what I need to know or at least catches my eye because it’s unique and creative.

Christina Eyuboglu, Vice President, Adduco Communications

My Communications Background

Christina Eyuboglu is a publicist specializing in B2B communications. Currently Vice President of Adduco Communications, Christina is focused on helping clients elevate their brand awareness through focused and targeted media relations. A dynamic and seasoned pr pro, Christina has spent her career building mutually beneficial relationships with journalists, editors, influencers and online content providers to support valuable, honest and truthful reporting on industry issues and key personnel.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

1. Integrity is key. Mean what you say and deliver on your promises. You will then become a trusted resource for journalists to call on you and your roster of clients again and again.

2. KNOW who you are pitching. Follow them on social media. Read their coverage. Connect on LinkedIn. Target your pitches accordingly. The days of mass pitching is over.

3. This is critical. PR people get such a bad rap and I hear publicists apologizing for bothering journalists with a pitch . As long as you act with integrity, deliver on your promises and are smart and concise with your communications, never apologize or feel shy about doing your job. You are not being a pain or bugging someone, you are providing important and valuable information to support journalism. If you work with this mindset, getting media coverage for your clients is easy and most of all, FUN!

Annie Scranton, Founder & President of Pace Public Relations

My Communications Background

Annie Scranton is the Founder & President of Pace Public Relations, a boutique PR firm based in NYC, specializing in media relations. Annie founded the company in 2010 after an eight-year career as a television producer & booker. Clients include Business Insider, National Review, Away and many others.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

1. Pay attention to the news. By this I mean, see what stories are trending that day in the news cycle, and then align yourself with that story as a thought-leader.

2. Offer tips & advice. It’s not enough to just opine — give the reader or viewer tactical, takeaway advice.

3. Be counterintuitive. Everyone loves a shocking opinion, especially the media! Take time to present unique talking points on the issue at hand.

Joanne Levine, Pres., Lekas & Levine Public Relations

My Communications Background

Joanne Levine has been a publicist for 28 years. She works with a wide variety of unusual small business clients. Lekas & Levine PR is based in the Chicago area.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

Write an interesting press release that is not who, what, when and where. Make it more of a feature style piece with a variety of angles an editor might be drawn to. Give the editor all the information on a silver platter so that it’s a no-brainer to visualize the story possibilities.

Carefully select the media you are going to send the release. Research what each writer specializes in. This can be done by studying the publication or program or by just Googling the reporter or editor’s name. Subjects they have covered will be a source of good information for you.

Remember to follow up in some way. This is easier said than done when pitching all day long, but to be most successful, you need to either email or call the reporter/editor if you don’t get a response. Above all, don’t be pesty and only contact again if you truly feel your pitch would be an appropriate fit for them. Many times they will say they never got the pitch and ask you to send it again. And this time, they might actually read it!

Melissa Grosser-Granite, Director of Public Relations, Logojoy

My Communications Background

Melissa Grosser-Granite is a Canadian PR consultant, based in Toronto, with over a decade of experience in the field of PR and Marketing. As a PR professional, Melissa loves working with brands to tell their story in a creative way and produce content that truly connects to global interests. Her interests lay in technology and lifestyle, with experiences working at prominent companies such as Logojoy, Microsoft, Buytopia, and acting as an independent consultant for numerous global brands.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

To spark media interest and secure good media coverage, here are my top three tips that I have come to live by in my career: (1) Utilize your company or clients’ original data that is interesting and transform it into a story angle — media love original data from global companies that is new and can stem a unique article; (2) Alter how you are creating and submitting your media pitches — this means understanding when it is appropriate to create a full press release versus an email pitch, when and how to create interesting ways to share content, such as videos, infographics, etc, and finding new and innovative ways to disseminate your content; and (3) Keep it personal — make it a priority to forge and nurture relationships with the media by executing personalized outreach with individual emails that truly connect to their interests and past articles that they have published (no email blasts), checking in with your top contacts with email, phone or in-person touch points and even enlisting advice on journalists from time to time when you are stuck on an angle. These efforts can go a long way in PR!

Peter Himler, founding principal, Flatiron Communications LLC

My Communications Background

Peter founded NYC PR/digital media consultancy Flatiron Communications LLC in 2005 after jettisoning the big agency world where he played leading media relations roles at Edelman, Burson-Marsteller, Cohn & Wolfe and Hill & Knowlton. He is president of the Publicity Club of New York, has written for Forbes, and edits a popular, tech-focused publication on Medium called Adventures in Consumer Technology. He is a graduate of Tufts University — for which he serves on the advisory boards of the university’s Marketing Committee and Communications & Media Studies Program — and often can be found on Twitter at @peterhimler.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

With a reported 6:1 ratio of PR pros to full-time U.S. journalists, today’s publicists must work especially hard if they hope to successfully engage a reporter or producer on behalf of a client. Here are the top three mistakes PR pros make (IMHO):

1. Mis-targeting — There’s no excuse for putting a story suggestion in the inbox of a journalist who has never covered, nor would ever consider covering the proposed topic. Tools now exist that can help avoid this common mistake, including MuckRack and Cision. Furthermore, if you use a service to send out group emails, know that many such services do not adequately mask the fact that the recipient is one among many — a definite turn-off for journalists.

2. Awful Subject Line — Since the subject line of an email will often determine whether the overture is opened or ignored, it is imperative to cogently capture the story idea. Worst example: A Good Story for You; Better example: XXX Acquires YYY. Superlatives in the subject line are a big plus, but avoid hyperbole.

3. Promotion-Minded — Nearly every journalist I know bristles at the notion that he or she is serving as a cog in a PR/marketing campaign. Their job is not to help companies sell more products or advance their messaging agenda. Stick to the essence of the news.

Here are three more:

4. No News Is No News — A cursory look at the myriad news releases that cross Business Wire or PR Newswire on any given day makes one wonder why their purveyors wasted time creating them in the first place. As PR counselors, we must honestly advise our clients on what makes and what doesn’t make a story.

5. Being Oblivious — Not only is it imperative to research the journalist before dashing off a story pitch, but it is equally important to have a thorough familiarity with the story’s context and any trends or developments that contribute to or take away from its newsworthiness, i.e., DON’T pitch a local TV news outlet a story on the day a mass shooting occurs in its hometown.

6. Leadtime — Unless it’s Amazon acquiring Whole Foods or Spotify filing for an IPO, publicists must give reporters some latitude to properly consider a proposed idea. It’s a fool’s errand to think that a reporter is going to suddenly pivot to your client’s news on a moment’s notice.

Ryan McCormick, Media Relation Specialist & Co-Founder of Goldman McCormick PR

My Communications Background

Ryan McCormick is Co-Founder & Media Relations Specialist at Goldman McCormick PR (www.goldmanmccormick.com ). Goldman McCormick PR earned a Gold Award in the Best Cause/Advocacy Campaign category in Bulldog Reporter’s 2016 CSR Awards. McCormick is also host & executive producer of the nationally syndicated Outer Limits of Inner Truth (www.outerlimitsradio.com) radio show.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

1. When a breaking story happens that encompasses your area of expertise, immediately let the media know you are available for interviews and provide one-to-three sentence long talking points which clearly state your perspective on the story.

2. When contacting the media, always ask if they have a brief moment to speak with you before going into your pitch. It’s a professional courtesy. If a producer cannot speak with you at that moment and asks you to call back at a designated time — do just that. In addition, always say please, thank you, and keep your tone & demeanor at the utmost professional level.

3. Be a trusted resource. Your reputation with the media is a long term engagement. The strength of the relationships you have with members of the press are largely dependent on how trustworthy you are (do you do what you say you will do and provide accurate information?), how quick you are to respond, and if you put the media’s needs above you own. If a producer or reporter is seeking an expert for a story and you’re not that person, do whatever you can to help put that producer / reporter in touch with the expert they seek.

Katie Shaffer, CEO/Founder, East River PR

My Communications Background

Katie Shaffer founded East River PR in 2012, bringing more than 25 years of experience in publishing, marketing, writing and public relations to a diverse range of clients. She has brought prominent positive coverage to clients in real estate, travel and tourism, architecture, design and more. Her work has been recognized nationally, winning two Silver Spike Awards from the Public Relations Society of America, Sierra Nevada chapter.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

1. It’s all about relationships.

Know the medium or outlet and maintain a great rapport with the editorial decision maker there. Being familiar with how you can get your client included as part of a program segment or section is important.

2.Serve as a trusted resource.

Reach out only when you have something solid that you think their viewership, readers or listeners would be interested in.

3.The early bird gets the worm.

Be a trend-spotter and jump on opportunities when you see a story breaking that your client can be part of. Right that minute, get on the phone, contact the producer and offer up your client to serve as a go-to spokesperson to provide expert perspective about what’s happening and why. Boom. You land this coverage and your client’s competition will be drooling and their PR team will be miffed as THE chosen outlet is featuring your client who is positioned on top of their game. You’ve just won the day. That’s how you do it.

As a public relations professional, it’s all about loving your craft and doing it exceedingly well. Our craft involves being very skilled when it comes to client and media relationships, being a news hound and being highly responsive.

Meredith Westheimer, Associate Director, Moore Communications Group

My Communications Background

With more than a decade of marketing, public relations and sales experience, Meredith is known for her enthusiasm, determination and ability to think creatively, which routinely translates to measurable successes for her clients. What gets her excited is a good story — or finding the good in any story — and then finding all the angles in which to tell it, including on behalf of a major South Florida city, nonprofits, a leading financial institution, government entities, a Forbes Five-Star rated resort, a leading performing arts center, major automotive companies, and more. Most memorable days in the office include, selling sand to South Floridians (similar to selling ice to an Eskimo!) when promoting Sandi, the world’s only 35-foot, 600-ton holiday sand tree; organizing a press event for a 3,000-year-old mummy, who was in the hospital for an overdue CAT Scan; and meeting and promoting cool people, from an astronaut to a Noble Laureate, and everything in between.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

Her top tips for securing earned media are:

Know thy self.

Knowing the ins and outs of your brand, customers and employees is critical to maximizing your media potential. It is possible to secure the same story in several different media outlets by taking a deep dive into all the elements.

Consider asking yourself:

- Who is quoted in this story and where do they live? Is there a local paper to pitch, as well as a broader regional or national publication?

- What is at your core as a brand? Is there a nonprofit element? A business angle?

- Would this make for a great TV segment? What are the visuals?

Once you have a full grasp on the brand and story, you will be overwhelmed with angles, resulting in several opportunities for coverage.

Know the media.

As in life, in media, the only constant is change. If you’re a passionate storyteller looking to shout your news from the rooftop, be sure to do your homework. Newsrooms are shrinking, and the way in which people take in their news is changing. Many traditional platforms, such as newspapers, magazines and broadcast (TV and radio), still have great appeal, and give the third-party endorsement from which any brand can benefit, however, with the advent of blogs, and a growing body of social influencers, it is more important than ever to narrow down your key media targets — and then really get to know them.

Learn about their beat, their interests and their needs, and then create personalized pitches — just. for. them. — no mass emails, please. Continue to invest in them, and you won’t be disappointed with the results. Promise.

Sell — don’t just connect — the dots.

Seems simple enough — if you know your brand, and you know the media, then connect the dots. And in many cases, that can be all it takes. Being aware of your strengths and stories and how they are a fit for people looking for content and sources can land you some pretty big wins. That said, don’t be afraid to sell your story. Many good stories can fall flat without a good pitch note behind them. Spend time crafting a personalized note, but also one in which the reporter or influencer is quickly convinced why this is a fit for their audience. Then be ready to respond.

Natalie Gerke, Head of Corporate Communications, Button

My Communications Background

Natalie is the Head of Corporate Communications for mobile startup Button, where she manages and leads the growing company’s PR and external communications strategy. In previous roles, Natalie has managed proactive and reactive communications and activities for brands including Airbnb, Tumblr, Foursquare, OpenTable, among others. She was also featured on PR Week’s Innovation 50 list, recognizing the rising stars of tech PR and digital communications professionals.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

Getting good media coverage can be completely different depending on the industry you work on. Everyone wants The New York Times or Wall Street Journal hits (and of course these are important — let’s not discount that), but the opportunities for any good publicist extends far beyond those two top tier publications.

1. Know your company’s goals and objectives. This seems obvious, but if you’re a b2b tech startup (like Button), industry trade publications could be just as impactful as NYT or WSJ (possibly even more). Look beyond your obvious publications and reporters and try something a bit different. For instance, if your company is trying to attract retail companies, it’s worthwhile to look into smaller trade pubs targeting that exact industry (e.g. RetailDive). Decision makers within larger companies often subscribe to and follow these pubs to keep up with industry news — be apart of that conversation.

2. Do your homework. This is one piece of advice that will never go stale. In a panel I hosted with tech reporters from Forbes, Fast Company, Recode, and Fortune earlier this year, this was the number one piece of advice (or, as we often see it, complaint). Take the extra two to five minutes, dig into someone’s past articles, Twitter feed, whatever it is and find what they truly cover. Just because a reporter wrote about cryptocurrency once 8 months ago doesn’t mean it’s a permanent part of their beat.

3. Use media relationships where they are within your company (not just your own). Anyone that’s in PR has to have some level of control freak in them — we couldn’t do this job if we didn’t. So naturally, we want to control each and every relationship the media has with our company. Let that go a bit, let your executives have relationships outside of your own with that reporter or journalist (unfortunately, that’s what is sometimes preferred on the reporter’s end — a reality we have be okay with regardless of HOW good we are at our jobs). When the time is right, leverage that relationship to tell the story you want, share your upcoming news, etc. I’ve learned it’s a group effort and if you’re able to empower your executives with what they need, you’ll get the outcome you want.

Tim Johnson, President and Founder, UPRAISE Marketing + Public Relations

My Communications Background

The expert in all things PR, Tim’s career spans more than three decades. He climbed the corporate ladder at big agencies — and although he remembers the days of press releases printed on real paper, founding UPRAISE was Tim’s way to escape the antiquated corporate structure and strategies, and flex his entrepreneurial muscles. UPRAISE is a marketing and public relations agency driven to help organizations grow and build their brands through integrated campaigns that include energized media and analyst relations, compelling content, engaging digital and social media, captivating design and video, and breakthrough events.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

• Do your homework — It is a MUST to only pitch reporters who cover your client’s market space. Make the pitch very brief, 7–8 lines max. Tell the reporter why your client is interesting and what you’d like him/her to do (have a call, read a release, etc.). When approaching a reporter for the first time, do your research, find something you have in common on their Twitter, LinkedIn or Facebook pages (but don’t over do this or it’s creepy). Customize the pitch to show you are familiar with his/her coverage area(s). Learn to accept no graciously. Because reporters get so many emails each day, a reporter not responding right away does not mean they are not interested. Follow up with a phone call. It works.

• The early bird gets the worm — In tech media, the 24-hour news cycle is even more rapid. To get your story out there, you have to pitch it ahead of the announcement date to secure pre-briefs (or pre-interviews) to make sure at least a few pieces of top tier coverage are in the pipeline. Also, make sure each reporter you pitch agrees to the embargo. On the day of the announcement, pitch as soon as the embargo is lifted. As a lot of media are on the East Coast, the earlier you can get the pitches out, the better chance you have of getting their attention.

• Know the product like the back of your hand — You only get one bite at the apple. If a reporter asks a technical question about a product, you’d better have the answer. You may not get that reporter’s attention again. What you should know includes the client’s value proposition, target markets and technical details. You also must know what the client is willing to discuss publicly or not.

Head of Communications and Brand, ClassDojo

My Communications Background

Lindsay leads communications and brand for ClassDojo, a classroom communication app used in 90% of K-8 schools in the U.S. and 180 countries. Before then she worked at Edelman and DeVries in New York and San Francisco, and spent a year working at Samsung Electronics in Seoul, South Korea where she developed an intense love for all things K-beauty.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

Take a reverse approach: write the article out before pitching it. Especially focus in on the headline and upfront paragraph (the rest can be tl;dr). You’ll be able to quickly tell from the onset if it’s compelling enough or needs more work. If more is needed, pump it up with stats, visuals, trends, current cultural happenings, user stories, etc. And provide links wherever possible — stats without evidence mean nothing.

Bring in the why : just focusing on what your company does can come off as too self-promotional. No one cares. Dig into the why it matters by going, 1) macro — tying to industry and societal trends or pop culture moments or, 2) micro — showing the impact of what you’re doing by highlighting a user story or one of your employees.

Spend time on the soundbites: journalists don’t have the space (or readers the energy) to read a two paragraph quote from your CEO. Take the time to come up with 3–4 short and memorable soudbites to get your key points across. Caryn Marooney’s RIBS test is a good place to start. And practice any difficult questions with your spokespeople — the first time they hear a trip-up question should never be in an interview.

Leah Jacobson, Founder, LJ Public Relations

My Communications Background

Leah Jacobson is the founder of LJ Public Relations, a media relations, branding and creative marketing consultancy with offices in New York and Los Angeles. Before founding LJPR, led in house communications teams at Michael Kors and Elie Tahari and also worked in retail consulting at Marvin Traub Associates. LJ Public Relations works across the fashion, lifestyle, home and design industries and approaches each client with strategic thinking that interplays brand building, deepening relationships with influencers and consumers and ultimately driving sales, conversions and meaningful business goals.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

Be nimble and be ready

If you are in touch with media about a story, chances are their deadline is imminent. Often a reporter will go with the company/contact that can get there the fastest so they can meet their deadline. Understanding the timeliness of press requests and communication can help any brand or company increase their exposure. Having a great photographer that can turn around product photos quickly in a pinch is an important tool to have in your arsenal. Having a repository of photos and shots in your arsenal is optimal so that when a reporter asks, you are ready to go.

Know your audience and why you want to reach them

Brands and companies who take the time to study their customer/audience and learn what they are reading or where they are getting their information have a huge leg up in the media landscape. Getting in a print magazine is exciting and often a great branding piece or accolade to speak about or reference, but will it move the needle with your target audience or customer? People who understand who they are talking to and how this melds into their media targets and strategy are setting themselves up for success.

Invest in long term goals and relationships

Setting out on a marketing journey takes time, patience and pivoting. Not everything will happen quickly. Of course a viral hit or quick hit is ideal when starting with new PR, but crafting a story, building out messaging and taking the time to understand who you are targeting are important elements of PR strategy that is set up for success. If you have patience and work with the right partner, media relations will pay off in the long run and benefit your company exponentially.

Lisa Buyer, Author of Social PR Secrets and CEO, The Buyer Group, a Social PR Agency

My Communications Background

Lisa Buyer — author of Social PR Secrets, CEO of The Buyer Group Social PR Agency, Adjunct Professor at University of Florida, Certified Yoga Instructor and Student

Author of Social PR Secrets with the foreword by Guy Kawasaki. Lisa brings 20+ years of publicity experience as an agency owner, practitioner and educator. Her secret is integrating PR, SEO and social media to the PR strategy. Lisa teaches a social media management class at University of Florida, is a yoga instructor and working on her next book Digital Detox Secrets, a how to book on digital life balance. She focuses on productivity and motivational ways to balance the pressures of working in an always on social world.

She is an avid yogi, author, entrepreneur, speaker, journalist, and educator. Lisa’s experience blends the traditional fundamentals with today’s digital best practices. Meet Lisa speaking at conferences such as Pubcon, Social Fresh, Boot Camp Digital, SMX or PRSA; or follow her on social via @lisabuyer.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

Three tip to get good media coverage

Newsjacking + Live Video = #InstaPublicity — Inject your brand’s news, opinions and ideas with a breaking or trending news story/topic or announcement. Start this first using Facebook Live or the live video channel your audience is on. The live video will get your message out and show your on air personality,it will then give you content to repurpose in an article, get quoted straight from the video. It’s your own media coverage, your media pitch and your relevant message to your audience.

Not High or Low > Go Medium — If you are trying to reach news audience, go direct and also gain the attention of larger news sources — publish your story direct to Medium or import a story from your own blog. Be sure to optimize using keywords, tags, a strong visual, video or infographic, site your sources and share it across social and among influencers you know will be interested. This also allows you to gain more social media followers and engage with new potential media outlets. Medium is easy, beautiful and full of features. You can even have your own branded publication and it’s also an excellent way to launch a personal brand with published content. Medium let’s you be your own publicist.

Attitude of Gratitude. Smile first, smile back. Helping others get publicity is the best way to create the good karma to increase your own positive exposure. Put your hidden agenda away and start doing one helpful something a day for someone in business. Authors, journalists, reporters, producers, bloggers and influencers have one thing in common, they are always on deadline, short on time and every little bit of extra help they can get is appreciated — eventually- even if it’s a Retweet of a story or information they might be interested or a shout out or a book review. If you make giving a habit, it can be a form of mediation from the inside out, feel good and when it comes to ask for something, people will be happy to help you. You already earned the opportunity for earned media. That’s why they call it earned. Give to get #FTW.

Jared Shapiro, The Tag Experience

My Communications Background

Jared is a New York Times best selling author, former editor-in-chief of Ocean Drive Magazine and editorial director of Life & Style Weekly and In Touch Weekly. He recently left the publishing world to open a branding/strategy/marketing/PR/communications firm called The Tag Experience in Miami, FL. With over 15 years in media, including hundreds of appearances on TV from The Today Show to Fox News, CNN, VH1, Access Hollywood and more, Jared is now taking his media experience and turning his attention towards his clients.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

Having been a journalist for the better part of 15 years, I understand the importance of developing sources and making contacts that can help develop into interesting stories, features, and provide great quotes. My phone is jammed with thousands of contacts all over the world, some who started off at the bottom and are now running major companies, and others who I have only just met yesterday — but they all are invaluable resources moving forward from a media standpoint. Here are three ways I utilize my journalism skills to land coverage for my clients:

1) BE TIMELY: We are constantly assessing current events and timely opportunities to maximize our clients’ exposure. Being aware of moments and being able to seize upon them quickly, following trends, monitoring social media, and helping to shape or drive a story, allows us to be ahead of any situation.

2) BE INFORMED: Staying aware of what our clients are working on, constantly checking in for updates and making sure we have face time with them allows us to really know their capabilities not only to speak as experts on a subject but also to find newsworthy angles that are not only fresh to their brand but could be intriguing to a journalist.

3) CONTACTS: Maintaining strong relationships and contacts within the media allows the whole team at The Tag Experience to work in unison to secure appropriate coverage. You have to get out of your office and make sure you are meeting the appropriate contacts but also you have to be accessible on a moments notice for a journalist looking to track you down. There are always a million options for someone to call, but there’s no point in being the best if you aren’t reachable.

Monica Finch, PR Manager, Classy

My Communications Background

Hailing from New York, Monica has been telling stories since she could talk, to everyone and anyone who’d listen. After making a career out of it, Monica has worked at top agencies including Edelman and Ogilvy, shaping the stories and reputations for blue chip brands such as Ford, Microsoft, eBay and LG. These days you can find Monica overseeing PR and communications at Classy, a San Diego startup on a mission to mobilize and empower the world for good.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

One of the things I learned early on in my career is that at the end of the day, no one wants to be annoyed by someone they don’t know, about something they don’t care about. Isn’t that why telemarketers get such a bad rap? So it goes without saying that before you can apply these tips, you must be pitching the right journalists.

Tip 1 — Ask not what the reporter can do for you, but what you can do for the reporter: It’s easy to feel the pressure that’s driving your outreach — you need coverage, and you need it now. But solid press coverage can take time, so the best thing you can do as you start to foster relationships is be useful. How can you make the reporter’s life easier? If it’s by meeting a tight deadline for them, getting them in touch with other sources, or even backing off for a bit, do it. A useful PR person is a successful one.

Tip 2 — Don’t be tone deaf: These days, almost every single day brings drama and uncertainty in newsrooms across the country, whether it’s a natural disaster caused by mother nature — or by a recent Twitter rant. There’s merit in knowing when to pull back or reshape your outreach so that you don’t seem insensitive or like you live under a rock.

Tip 3 — Find the tension: Think of a time where you held the attention of a crowd during a story you were telling. Why were they interested? What kept them hanging on to your words? It was likely tension, unless you were giving them instructions on how to claim a free ice cream cone. Figure out what the tension could be in your pitch, then figure out a way to amplify it. Bonus points if it’s something timely and relevant to the reporter’s beat.

Jimmy Tomczak, Founder — Wet Star

My Communications Background

As a marketer, author, and speaker, Jimmy Tomczak serves doers who want to do more. Jimmy founded Wet Star to help people and companies with big ideas take massive action today so that they get the press they deserve because their impact benefits humanity.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

The three things you need to remember to get good coverage are the same three things you need to remember for why you went into business. Just ask and authentically answer these three questions and you’ll see the rest begin to work itself out:

1. Who do you want to help and why?

Knowing your audience means you know how to speak to them and share the best thing for them with the most value — to them. The press shouldn’t be just about you but how you serve. How your company, product, or you help people and why.

2. How do you want to spend your time?

You can spend your time pitching reporters about something that’s not that big of a deal, or you can go out there and actually do something that matters. People will talk about it just because you’re doing the right thing, doing it notably, and doing it in a way that helps. Go do that but do no harm.

3. How much do I care about this?

How much do you care about the thing you’re trying to share? If it’s not amazing , awesome , and you’re so excited about it you can barely sleep — how is anyone else going to be interested at all? Back to the drawing board if you don’t know who you want to help and how you want to help them. When you know that, the rest works itself out. I even wrote a #1 book about it. Advice For Entrepreneurs: Start Now — Jimmy Tomczak

Drew Gerber, CEO, Wasabi Publicity

My Communications Background

For 30 years, Drew Gerber has been inspiring those who want to change the world. As the CEO of Wasabi Publicity, Inc., lauded by the likes of PR Week and Good Morning America, he sparks aha conversations that lead to personal and business success. Wasabi Publicity lives to launch conversations that make a difference and change the world.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

1. Tie yourself into breaking news.

Breaking news is what drives the media. Whether it be national or world events, politics, news and research on health and wellness, major scientific breakthroughs or entertainment news about celebrities or sports stars, tying your pitches to the news is a very effective way to grab the media’s attention. What’s great about breaking news is it answers the Why now? question for the media and increases your chances to share your insights, commentary or expert opinion. Breaking news also answers the Why should I care? question for media. In news meetings, editors and producers constantly ask their reporters to answer one question from the point of view of the reader, viewer or listener: Why should I care? As an expert, you’re there to serve the media and help them answer that question.

2. Make the media’s job easier. After you pitch, be prepared to jump when the media calls. The earlier you can get involved with the story, the greater your impact in the conversation and the greater your chance to be part of the follow-up. If you’re doing PR, shift your thinking from What can the media do for me? to What exactly can I do for the media? Look at the world from the media’s perspective. If you want to land top-tier media coverage, you must make yourself and your materials available at the drop of a hat. Making the media’s job easier will ultimately produce the results you are looking for.

3. Be clear about what problem you solve for the media’s audience. One of the key questions we ask new clients is, what problem in today’s news or culture does your product or service address? This is a very useful question to help you determine why the media should care about you. Once you are clear on what problem you are addressing or question you are answering, then you find the media who are working on these issues and pitch your expertise. Be persistent and don’t get discouraged if you don’t get their attention at first. By paying attention to the topics that are trending in the news, you can hone your message and build relationships with the media that will pay off.

Melissa Sheer, President, Kent Place Communications

My Communications Background

Melissa Sheer has over 17 years of experience in the financial services and communications industries. She is currently President of Kent Place Communications, a full-service public relations firm founded in 2012 and headquartered in Summit, NJ. Melissa is a former Managing Director of Kekst and Company, a leading strategic, corporate, and financial communications firm. Prior to Kekst, Melissa was a Director of Investor Relations at Citigroup, and a Senior Fixed Income Portfolio Manager at Morgan Stanley. A native of Brooklyn, NY, Melissa holds a B.A. in Political Science from Barnard College/Columbia University and an MBA in finance from New York University’s Stern School of Business.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

1 — Be responsive: Most journalists are on deadline and appreciate a timely reply — even if you don’t have a client source that fits their inquiry. Yay or nay — always let the reporter know if you can or cannot help with their story.

2 — Pitch timely and unique stories: A news story must be compelling and timely to attract a journalists’ attention. Focus on the unique points of your pitch and how your story is relevant right now and you’ll have a better chance at coverage.

3 — Build trusting relationships: Take the time to cultivate relationships and connections with key journalists you will want to pitch in the future. The more you know about a reporter, the better and more confidently you can pitch them a story. Building a relationship ahead of time may make a reporter more likely to take your call when you’ve got a timely, unique story to tell.

Shauna Wilson, Director of Communications, Rock & Roll Hall of Fame

My Communications Background

The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame’s Director of Communications Shauna Wilson knows how to turn the volume up when it comes to shaping brands and creating stories. With cool gigs from publicist for the Philadelphia Flyers and corporate communications for the Ultimate Fighting Championship to her current role, Wilson has used her PR skills to sellout events, build brands, diversify revenue streams, and attract customers and fans. She’s amplified messages around the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony and the Museum in Cleveland, scored national stories around playoff series and Winter Classic events, fought to bring the UFC and mixed martial arts into the mainstream and elevated athlete and artist profiles worldwide.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

1. Pretend you are on the receiving end. When pitching a story to media, ask yourself why they should care and what’s in it for them. Keep in mind that you wouldn’t walk up to a stranger and ask for a favor. It’s easier to build rapport with media before you need them. Put the audience first and cultivate a valuable relationship with the right media contacts.

2. Tell it, don’t sell it. A mass press release isn’t going to get you the feature you want with a national outlet. Offer the outlet an exclusive angle. Build a good story that has a beginning, middle and end. Look for a human interest angle or have data that might be a valuable insight for audiences. Make it clear what action you want people to take, compel people to do it, and provide options for engagement. Make sure you state what you would like from the reporter. Think beyond print and tailor your strategy for each opportunity.

3. Be easy to work with. Use the 24 hour rule and reply back to media quickly. You should also anticipate media needs and have a toolbox ready with available assets. Be ready to provide hi-res images, audio clips, video sizzles, embedded links, quotes, fact sheets, pre-sized graphics sharable across social and digital platforms, etc. The more prepared you are, the more success you’ll have. Finally, in my current position at the Rock Hall I have a saying, For those about to rock, we salute you. For those about to cover us, I say thank you. Sometimes the best way to say thank you is to use your company’s owned and shared platforms to share the coverage.

Claire McKinney, Claire McKinney PR

My Communications Background

Claire McKinney has been working in public relations for 20 years. She has appeared on the Today show and CSPAN as an expert on publishing and she travels regularly to speak to authors and audiences about PR and social media marketing. Some of the people she has worked with include Della Reese, Madeleine Albright, Walter Mosley, Alan Dershowitz, Yao Ming, Her Majesty Queen Noor, and Kristin Gore.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

Telling a real story, jumping on current news, and being familiar with the media outlet and the contact you are pitching are my biggest recommendations for getting good media coverage.

Lay-people (not publicists) often don’t understand what a story really is. Greener publicists might call up a contact and start a pitch with the name of the company, product, or person being promoted and find themselves stuck with only a boring boiler plate or press release to recite. There needs to be something that will resonate with the viewers and/or readers of the media entity you are pitching. Did the product change someone’s life and is that person available to be interviewed? Are you telling a story that no one has heard before that could even be breaking news ? Watch and read what’s out there and you’ll see what I mean.

Pay attention to what is happening in the current news cycle and hustle! See what is trending on Twitter and get news feeds from national outlets like Fox, CNN, the New York Times, and BuzzFeed. Find the reporters talking about the news that relates to what you need to pitch and tell them you have something that can enhance or even bring a new element to their stories.

Do your research and know what the outlet you are after is interested in. People magazine, for example is looking for stories with human interest angles. You can easily go on their website to find people who cover different topics and then find the journalists on Facebook or Twitter. I have had my share of hang ups in my career from reporters who did not cover what I was pitching. It can be horribly embarrassing, not to mention ineffective, to call up an environmental reporter and tell them a great story about an energy company and its earnings related to the use of coal!

Tanya Hayre, Media Relations Expert

My Communications Background

Tanya Hayre is a seasoned communications professional and founder of a media consultancy, where she provides strategic counsel to senior executives in large public and private sector organizations in many fields. Over the course of her career, she has served as a press representative for some of the world’s largest companies, including MSNBC/NBC Universal, Fox News, Louis Vuitton Moet-Hennessy (LVMH), McDonald’s and Procter & Gamble. Tanya is also a writer for the Huffington Post.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

1. Do your homework by reading the news: this is the most important part of PR — before you pitch anything or anyone, be sure to spend at least 30 minutes on your calendar every day to read the news. I subscribe to a ton of newsletters, which condense the big stories of the day and helps me stay on top of multiple outlets that are relevant to what my clients do. It also me stay on top of who the writers are and what stories my clients may be able to weigh in on.

2. Identify 5 key reporters to pitch for your client: the key to success before pitching any writer is to research the companies and topics they cover. Who are these reporters quoting in their articles and how do those being quoted compare to your client in the competitive landscape? Follow the reporters on Twitter. It’s not enough to rely on what their beat may be — for example, a retail reporter may solely cover Amazon or they may only cover Walmart. Make the distinction by researching what their articles are about and who they rely on for quotes.

3. Send tailored and relevant pitches: once you’re on top of the news cycle and familiar with the writers in the space and what they cover, you’re on to step three, which is sending targeted emails to each journalist. Let the writer know who your client is, what your client does and how it relates to what they cover, i.e.: I see you cover Amazon, and thought you’d be interested in the findings from a leading research company that just released a study that found 75% of millennials prefer shopping on desktops, as oppose to shopping on mobile. Thought this was an interesting finding, considering the prevalence of cell phones.

Kristi Piehl, Founder & CEO, Media Minefield

My Communications Background

Kristi Piehl is a former TV news anchor and reporter and founded Media Minefield in Minneapolis, MN in 2010. She invented our NewsabilitySM process which is the art of securing real news for our clients. Clients nationwide; offices in Minneapolis and Arizona.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

Be the Expert- The media is looking for experts to weigh in on timely topics. Connecting your expertise to these topics increases your chances of getting media coverage. Keep this top of mind when you are doing the interview, remember to be the expert. Give good information and tips.

Think Local — Everyone wants to be on The Today Show, but think about your potential clients or customers. Is national really the best place for you to reach your target audience? You may be more likely reach them with a local news interview. Each earned media opportunity, whether the audience is big or small, adds to your credibility and is a valuable asset for your marketing efforts.

Talk in Sound Bites — The best way to get more media coverage is to give a good interview! Practice out loud ahead of your interview. Know what you are going to say and control the interview. At Media Minefield, we work with our clients and transform their message into 10–20 second sound bites. The best interviews feel like a conversation.

Candis Melamed, Founder, Spotlight Communications Group

My Communications Background

Candis Melamed is the founder of Spotlight Communications Group — a full service PR, marketing and communications agency specializing in the health & beauty industries. Her work with some of the country’s foremost medical experts and international beauty brands has yielded top national and international media placements for her firm’s clients. Through her ability to create unique story opportunities and cultivate strong media relationships, she and her team position Spotlight clients as leaders in their industries — as well as measurably contribute to achieving client business objectives.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

I believe that getting good media coverage is all about: clearly understanding the clients objectives and brand, creating strategic and unique story ideas and being graciously persistent. The definition of good media coverage has drastically changed from what it was five years ago…even three years ago! With the growth of social media and the digital age, traditional print media isn’t as sought after as it once was. Online media outlets turn around stories much faster and more often, with the advantage of hyperlinking to a client’s brand or company’s website. This not only connects readers directly to the client in one-step, it also helps build online search ranking for our clients.

In addition to online media, social media channels for notable media outlets have become another sought-after medium. Above all, strong media coverage is more likely to be achieved by communicating a brand, product or expert’s unique story utilizing their authentic voice. This helps the media and thus their audience feel connected and results in engaging them on a more significant level. PR is not necessarily appropriate for everyone. The client must have or offer something that is unique and captivating — whether that be their training and background as an expert, or the innovative product or service they are selling as a company. Objectively, you must ask yourself: Why should someone care? If the answer is compelling then you know you are on to something that we likely garner media interest. The secret sauce in the recipe for success is creativity and persistence! Media editors, writers and even freelancers are bombarded with thousands of emails a day, so as you can imagine, it can be challenging to break through the chatter. So, once you have your authentic voice and unique product or service, you need to strategically and affably follow up to get noticed.

Kate Knox, Senior Vice President, Media Relations, Current

My Communications Background

Kate Knox is Senior Vice President, Media Relations at Current and has than 20 years of experience representing people, brands and pitching stories. From CEOs to celebs, Kate knows how to turn solid relationships into coverage that turns heads. To quote Vanessa Williams, Kate is the most organized and professional publicist I know.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

Keep Your Media Friends Close — Whether it’s an intimate dinner or a quick coffee date, nothing is more valuable in the world of PR than a one-on-one conversation with a journalist. In these moments, I learn more how their job works and what they need for a good story, which helps me guide my clients in the right direction. And I always remember birthdays, baby due dates, etc. to find unexpected ways to connect.

Be Real & Authentic — With more and more people turning to newspapers for information, and TV viewership numbers being up, earned media is more powerful than ever. And in the time of fake news, it is our job to continue to push authenticity to generate positive coverage for clients. This can be done easier with strong relationships — and is also a great way to establish new ones.

Think Integrated — In this day in the age for a publicist, it isn’t just about the pitch. Journalists are now more than just writers for a newspaper — they can be influential on Twitter, or have an influential blog. Remember: there are so many more ways to reach a journalist besides an email or call — you can Tweet at them, etc.

Laura Emanuel, Director of Public Relations, Brownstein Group

My Communications Background

Laura Emanuel, APR, is Director of Public Relations at Brownstein Group, where her responsibilities include department management, strategic planning for both the agency and clients, resource planning, staff development and new business. Laura has been with BG for 9 years and prior to her role as Director, she established the agency’s AEC practice group, which supports brand communication efforts for a variety of clients in the areas of architecture, interior design, construction management, real estate development, building materials, home goods and energy efficiency. Laura has a proven media relations track record and has secured clients in The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, Forbes, USA Today, The Washington Post, Men’s Health, Investor’s Business Daily and CNBC.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

1. Give Them a Face and it Doesn’t Have to be Yours

Sometimes the best face of the story isn’t yours; it’s the person most impacted by your brand or the trend. Engaging a person not affiliated with your brand, but who best embodies the heart of your story, can lead to a more authentic, relatable narrative and a more credible interview. But, it carries some risk since speaking with the media is not their primary job so be sure you’ve taken steps to educate them on interview protocol. It’s important that you let this person use their own words — don’t over-script them with talking points — it is their personal experience that makes them a powerful ambassador. Trust me, authenticity outweighs the risk here.

2. Do Their Legwork

Doing more of the legwork — like providing data, infographics and additional sources — means you’re shaping more of the story (win!) while also being a better resource to the media (win-win!). Sharing 3rd party or proprietary data demonstrates the trend in a tangible way and simultaneously authenticates your message. To further illustrate it, consider designing an infographic to depict data points (just be sure you cite the sources in the caption) and offer it to media as part of your initial pitch, or as follow-up to your interview. If data is not available or is not relevant, consider engaging a 3rd party source who is respected in your brand’s industry. This person does not need to be a household name, but does need to be a valuable, objective source that will reinforce that narrative you seek to tell. To start, you’ll need to evaluate whether their insights will complement yours– and don’t forget to evaluate their interview skills.

3. BYOS — Bring Your Own Soundbite

Interviews are great, but for media inching ever closer to their deadline, interviews are time-consuming and not always possible — especially when you are commenting on breaking news. When pitching a reporter via email, rather than leaning only on an interview as a means to offer your insight, consider including a pre-approved soundbite from your spokesperson. For this to work, the soundbite needs to be short, punchy and contain a unique point of view that is not already published. The soundbite method may not result in having the largest share-of-voice within the published story, but it does increase the likelihood that your voice will be included.

Lauren Flanagan, Senior Account Supervisor, Covet PR

My Communications Background

Lauren Flanagan is a Senior Account Supervisor at Covet PR with nearly seven years of national CPG experience at leading firms around the country, possessing an expertise in health, wellness and food brands. She launched her career in New York City, where she thrived in the fast-paced atmosphere, building strong relationships with top-tier media and influencers. More recently, her time is spent focusing on overall account management, campaign strategy and development, as well as overseeing event logistics and activations.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

The most important tip for great media coverage is to always personalize pitches. If you can show a writer that you read their stories (& not just the headlines or the first paragraph) and know a little bit about their personal life or career, they are WAY more inclined to write back and consider your pitch for coverage if it’s relevant to their beat. To that point, my second tip is to avoid mail-merge whenever possible. There is just too much room for error or a dreaded Hi [NAME] mistake to be made, and media won’t forget that happened. I promise it’s always worth taking the time to send one-off pitches. Lastly, don’t forget about freelance writers and contributors! They may not be on staff at your target outlet, but if they like your pitch, product, etc., they usually have a few different ways for getting the news out there. I’ve seen a lot of success come from cultivating relationships with freelance writers as they’re constantly writing for different outlets and/or verticals. You never know, they could end up covering your pitch in multiple outlets — win, win! That said, if that person covers travel, and you have a food story, try not to waste their time if you know it’s not a fit for them. That way, they’ll be more likely to read your email or answer your call when the perfect angle for them rolls in.

Lindsey Salas, Communications Director, North 6th Agency

My Communications Background

Lindsey Salas oversees all internal communication and branding strategies, marketing and events initiatives, and media relations across N6A’s offices in New York and Toronto. She joined N6A in 2014 and serviced clients spanning the food and beverage industry, travel/hospitality, professional services, consumer facing applications, and more. In 2015, Lindsey was named winner of the N6A Bucket List competition which rewards the highest-producing N6A staff member over the second half of the year according to N6A’s signature KPI ranking system. Prior to joining N6A, she worked with a renowned automotive company, Jaguar Land Rover North America, implementing integrated PR campaigns. Lindsey holds a Bachelor of Arts in Communications from California State University, Fullerton and currently resides in Manhattan.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

Lindsey Salas, PR professional and Communications Director at North 6th Agency (N6A), can provide tips on getting good media coverage for clients covering the foundations of relationship building, newsjacking, and personalization.

• Relationship building: take every opportunity to get to know reporters — congratulate them on new positions, express interest in their work, meet for coffee or drinks, etc. These are the best ways to develop relationships and grow a network of people who might need you, and vice versa, in the future.

• Newsjacking: act immediately on breaking news and offer client POV where applicable. Staying on top of the news is key, along with understanding how your client can be inserted. Act quickly and strategically for garnering quality coverage in a timely manner, and you’ll establish your client as an informed spokesperson on the matter early on.

• Tailoring pitches: do your research and understand who you’re pitching and why. Craft your pitch to fit strategically within those reporters’ beats and past work. Personalize your pitch by showing the reporter that you’ve taken the time to learn about who they are, what they do, and why they might be interested in what you have to offer them. Blasting a generic pitch to a long list of reporters will not get you far.

Samantha Jacobs, Founder & President, Hemsworth Communications

My Communications Background

Samantha Jacobs is a corporate communications and public relations strategist who has represented clients in a variety of industries including travel and tourism, hospitality, cruise, travel distribution/travel agency, consumer packaged goods, retail, wellness, sports and leisure, health and beauty, publishing and more. Her career spans 18 years in public relations, marketing and communications, including working as a senior-level executive for top-ranked PR agencies and corporations. A seasoned, well-rounded marketing, communications and public relations counselor, Samantha’s bread and butter is her media relations expertise, with a rolodex of A-list journalists that has garnered widespread exposure for countless clients in outlets like CNN, USA Today, Good Morning America, The Wall Street Journal, Cruise Critic, Redbook, Self, Shape, InStyle, Conde Nast Traveler, National Geographic, Travel + Leisure and many more, including virtually every imaginable travel and tourism, hospitality, F&B and sports industry trade/business publication.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

Pitch Perfect

When you’re pitching your client, make sure the information you are sending over is clear, concise and has been proof read by several sets of eyes. Journalists often receive thousands of emails in one day, so you have to grab their attention quickly and provide correct information.

Media List Saavy

When distributing news, think about who you are sending it to — do the people on your media list even care about the topic? You want to make sure you don’t waste a journalist time by pitching them something they’re not interested in covering. Take the time to do some research on previous articles — and mention you saw it in your pitch. A targeted and strategic approach to media outreach is one of your best bets in receiving media coverage that will wow your client.

Make it Worthwhile

If you want good media coverage you want to be pitching something important that people should or would want to know about. It doesn’t have to be earth-shattering but should be something exciting and new. Even if it’s something old and your client wants coverage on it get those creative juices flowing and put a twist on it to make it interesting and worth talking about!

Mary Eva Tredway, Publicity Director, Butin Integrated Communications

My Communications Background

Mary Eva Tredway is a seasoned media relations veteran and publicist with extensive relationships and contacts at hundreds of media outlets nationwide. She brings more than 30 years of public relations expertise in the areas of consumer brands, travel & tourism, non-profit, and B2B. She is truly a stranger to no one and has secured placements in nearly every major daily paper, national magazine and morning show in the U.S. on behalf of her clients thanks to her woo mentality.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

(1) Think like a journalist and act like a friend: There are a lot of publicists out there, just like you, who are pitching stories 24/7. The best way to separate yourself from the crowd and truly stand out is to treat everyone you’re pitching like you would a friend. For example, say you have some amazing tickets to the hottest new band in town, and you’re sure your friend would love to go to this concert, but they’ve never heard of the band. Think about how you would tell your friend why they should take time out of their busy schedule to go see this band? You would first be excited to tell them about it (you should start with believing in what you’re selling), explain why you know they’d love to go based on their preferences (you should know what they like/dislike), and what you think they’ll get out of going to the event. Another element to this is making them feel special by getting to know them and focusing on them as a person versus only seeing them as a journalist.

(2) So, what? You should constantly be asking this of yourself, your team, and your clients, because this is exactly what the reporter on the other end of the pitch is thinking. So, what makes your pitch important, relevant, timely, interesting, groundbreaking to the rest of the world? You have a new soda you want to pitch? So, what? Is it the first of its kind, does it have an ingredient no one else has ever used? You need stats, facts, and vidoes/images that are clearly differential and authentic. Be sure you’re staying abreast of trends and news relevant to your clients to seize any opportunity to connect your pitch to an existing story or headline.

(3) Stay connected! Making a relationship with a reporter and continuing to stay in touch overtime is key. Just like any other industry, journalists move around, switch beats, and change roles (especially freelancers!). When this happens, it’s the perfect time to reconnect, see what’s new and what they’re up to, as well as hopefully get a personal introduction to whoever has taken their previous position.

Lee Caraher, President & CEO, Double Forte PR

My Communications Background

Lee Caraher is the founder and CEO of Double Forte, a national public relations and digital media agency, based in San Francisco, that works with beloved consumer, technology and wine brands. Lee is a highly sought after communications expert known for her business building acumen and insights and is an acclaimed author, speaker and a recognized expert on creating high performing, positive, intergenerational workplaces. Lee is active in her community, and sits on the board of directors or trustees of KQED Public Media, San Francisco’s Grace Cathedral, and Menlo College.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

1) Tell a Good Story — Whether you’re pitching online, print or broadcast media, the number one thing you need to have is a compelling story that matters — not just to the journalist, but also the media outlet’s readers or viewers. At the end of the day, journalists need their stories to be seen and shared via social media, so make sure you’re offering something that will help them make this happen.

2) Know Who You’re Talking to and Why — Do your homework and research the appropriate media person who covers, or may have an interest in, the topic you’re pitching. Journalists appreciate a pitch that’s targeted, concise and relevant to their beat or interests. Avoid generic email blasts and, for goodness sake, spell the person’s name correctly.

3) Get Your Ass(ets) in Gear — From images and video to spokespeople, make sure you have your assets ready to go before you start pitching. Journalists work against strict deadlines, so if you’re reaching out with a story idea, be ready to help the reporter get across the finish line and fast. Don’t make them wait for the visuals, data or interviews that complete the story. Do the heavy lifting up front so when you start pitching the process is efficient and mutually beneficial for you and the reporter.

Ali Zaidi, Founder, KIL PR

My Communications Background

Pakistan’s first celebrity blogger, media entrepreneur, and celebrity publicist.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

1.) The first important thing is to build a personal connection with a journalist. You have to make sure the journalist knows that you’re credible and honest.

2.) Start local.. They say that charity starts at home. If you’re working on something and want to get promoted; there are so many charity events that are happening and always have local media present. Get involved as much as you can and you’ll be seen and promoted.

3.) Use social media! The best thing these days we can do is to promote ourselves and our content. Social Media has been a publishing medium where anyone can post anything and capture attention of media outlets and other users. Always engage in positive stories and publish meaningful content of what your brand is and why is it important.

Heather Adams, Founder and CEO, Choice Media & Communications

My Communications Background

Heather Adams is the Founder and CEO of Choice Media & Communications and has spent more than 20 years working in the public relations field. Throughout her extensive career, Adams has made it her goal to provide expert communication strategy and relationship-based service for clients across diverse industries including publishing, leadership, government, lifestyle, entertainment, business and faith-based organizations. She has played an instrumental role in helping more than 75 authors land a spot on the New York Times bestsellers list by implementing strategic publicity campaigns designed to achieve maximum success.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

After spending more than 20 years working in public relations, I’ve found these three things are key to securing good media coverage:

1. Develop a relationship and rapport with the media you are pitching. You cannot cold pitch everyone and expect them to want to cover your client. If you are able to build a relationship with a media professional, they are more likely to read your pitch or be willing to hear from you about potential coverage. It’s also important to be thoughtful and considerate about what you’re pitching based on what someone normally covers. 2. You must be a constant consumer of media. If you quit consuming the media — all media- you won’t know what’s going on. You have to be reading and watching to know what they’re covering, who contributes regularly to the outlet and what series they are running. Also, as a PR professional, it’s important to know what’s in the news. Pay attention to trends and headlines. You may have the perfect source for something that’s going on in the news, but you must act fast before the headlines change.

3. You have to know your client and their brand intimately. When you know someone or a brand well, you are able to speak on their behalf or know how they would respond to a certain subject. Many times, news happens so quickly that you need to be able to respond to things as they happen. By knowing them well, you can proactively engage on their behalf, so you don’t miss the opportunity. If you have to wait for your client to respond, you may miss the chance.

Laura Blank, Founder/Principal, Keylight Communications

My Communications Background

Laura Blank is the founder and principal of Keylight Communications where she provides strategic counsel and leads public relations campaigns for clients focused on fundraising, media outreach, and branding. Before starting Keylight Communications, Laura spent a decade on World Vision’s public relations team where she was responsible for numerous high-profile marketing campaigns, disaster response fundraising, influencer engagement, and crisis communications. Earlier in her career she was a television news producer at CNN and NY1 News in New York City, and she has made numerous appearances on ABC, NBC, FOX, and CNN as well as local media throughout the United States.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

1. Let the story speak for itself. You need to be creative to be a successful PR pro, but if it takes you more than a few sentences to get to the point of the pitch, you haven’t found the best angle for the story. A good story is the thing you come home and talk about over dinner or share with your friends on social media. If you can boil your pitch down to a headline, it’ll be easier for the journalists you’re working with to understand the story — and when they’re reading 100 pitches a day — you’ll be more likely to cut through the clutter with a clear, compelling pitch.

2. Be willing to go the extra mile for your client. If you’re willing to pick up the phone to pitch that weekend event, reach out late at night to catch those overnight editors, or newsjack a breaking news story to pitch your subject matter expert, you’re going to be a step ahead of everyone else — and ultimately have some very happy clients on your hands! (On the same note, being available to quickly respond to a journalist’s query will go a long way toward building your credibility with that journalist, and it may get your client an interview ahead of someone else who didn’t pick up the phone on Saturday morning!)

3. Believe in your client. Unless you’re an excellent liar, it’s tough to fake your way through a successful media campaign. If you don’t believe in your client or the work they’re doing, it’s doing to be difficult to pitch them to the press. If you carefully select clients you believe in, the pitching becomes the easiest part of the PR outreach. We all want to do meaningful work; find clients you believe in.

Tamar Aprahamian, Sr. Director, Publicity

My Communications Background

For more than 12 years, Tamar Aprahamian has worked in event and lifestyle PR for some of the world’s most prestigious entertainment and consumer brands. Currently, she serves as the Sr. Director of Publicity at Playboy Enterprises, in conjunction with SpinLab Communications. Prior to joining Playboy, Tamar’s career highlights include global publicity campaigns for brands including Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino, Beats by Dr. Dre, Caesars Entertainment and WWE, as well as leading publicity for live red carpet events, music festivals and national award shows.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

1. My number one rule is do your research! I recommend searching the journalist on social media before pitching. Take time to read the writer’s most recent stories to make sure you’re actually pitching them on a beat they cover. Sometimes reporters are looking for pitches via Twitter and even mention they’re open to receiving DMs. You can easily score from a simple (and professional) Tweet!

Researching also means being mindful and aware of current events, especially in today’s climate. There have been many times I was about to hit send on a pitch, then realized the editor was probably on the ground covering anywhere from a natural disaster to a Kardashian pregnancy story. The last thing you want to do is ask for an update or pitch a product, when the majority of the country is focused on breaking news.

2. Most PR professionals get pressured to produce results for their clients, so they tend to make the same repeat mistakes such as blasting a pitch or press release. Press see right through an email blast, and most likely hit delete without even getting through the first sentence. Be sure to tailor your pitch to each individual press contact. From your research, you may even want to mention a story they just wrote that inspired you or perhaps something you noticed they did over the weekend through social media. Don’t be creepy about it. Find a way to be smooth and cool enough to show you did your research on them before you just hit send to 500+ contacts. I guarantee you’ll get their attention if done right.

3. Know your audience — aka your client and the press outlet! Don’t overpromise. Sometimes you may have a really great pitch, but rather than it being a national news story (and your clients expects coverage on GMA), your pitch may turn out to be a great regional story (and you end up with multiple local broadcast segments and regional newspaper mentions).

BONUS TIP:

Journalists are busy, so help them out by spoon-feeding them in a clear and concise way. The shorter the pitch, the better. Have all of your asks (i.e. hashtags, links) and assets (i.e. video/broll, hi-res images) outlined so they don’t have to reply with questions (possibly delaying or preventing coverage). Don’t forget to always thank them if they do cover!

Krista Canfield McNish, CEO and Founder of Canfield McNish Consulting

My Communications Background

Over the past decade, Canfield McNish has devoted herself to uncovering unique and compelling ways people are using a product or service and revels in helping thousands of other people hear those stories. As the head of her own corporate communications strategy consultancy, she helps startups and businesses of all sizes craft their own unique story. Canfield McNish founded FoodWaterShoes.com in 2016, spent nearly seven years in corporate communications at LinkedIn (both pre and post IPO) and was formerly Gogobot’s Vice President of Corporate Communications.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

In every industry relationships matter and media is no exception. Instead of shilling your company, product or service non-stop, take a step back and think about ways you can genuinely help journalists you admire with stories they are currently working on. Be open to engaging with reporters, editors and producers even if it’s not the perfect story for you. Find a way to genuinely participate. Staying top of mind and building relationships in the media industry is a long term play. Pause and take a moment to contemplate if your news is genuinely newsworthy. If not, you may be better off thinking about ways you can comment on current trends that are happening in your industry. Try to get your point across in as few sentences as possible. Distill your material down to the bare goodness. Short and sweet is always best.

Bill Corbett Jr., President, Corbett Public Relations

My Communications Background

Bill Corbett is President of Corbett Public Relations, Inc., an award-winning public and media relations firm based in Floral Park, NY. He is a recognized public relations, media relations and marketing leader and expert with over 25 years’ experience. Bill’s clients have recently been featured by ABC’s Good Morning America, Fast Company, Entrepreneur, FiOS1 News, News 12 Long Island, Fox 5 NY, Newsday, The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, AP, Huffington Post, Fortune, Long Island Business News, Fox News, and hundreds of other national, regional, local and trade media outlets.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

1) For TV as well as print/online, always offer the full package to the reporter or editor. This means providing to them all of the elements (and more) of the story. For example, provide your client, explain why they are an expert/leader, provide supporting experts, individuals or consumers, set up a highly visual and easily accessible location and work with the reporter or media outlet’s schedule. Certainly, the subject matter should be newsworthy, topical/ timely and a story that has not been done exactly the same way before.

2) Even if you are pitching online or print, always think about the visual of the story in terms of how it will be for the viewing audience. Explain clearly how the story has a highly visual component that can be photographed and/or shot on video.

3) Reporters are under time constraints and pressure like never before. Focus on interest grabbing subject lines for emails and keep pitches as short as possible. Some members of the media get hundreds of pitches each day. Yours must stand out. You may event consider to putting their name in the subject line. Target reporters who have covered the topic you are pitching and who have expressed interest in the subject matter you are presenting. Follow reporters on social media, see what they share, like and post, watch and read their stories and reports. Like and share what they are posting. The more you know about their interests and subjects they cover, the better shot you have at getting the placement.

Durée Mellion Ross, President, Durée & Company

My Communications Background

Durée & Company President Durée Mellion Ross fell in love with public relations at the age of 19 during a fated college internship. Originally a double major in broadcast journalism and sociology at the University of Miami, she found her place in the world of PR. Now an award-winning PR entrepreneur, Durée leads a talented team of media relations and marketing specialists in South Florida.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

1) Start with a team brainstorming to get the creative juices flowing. Set your PR objectives and craft a creative strategy that are in line with the client’s business goals in order to maximize results.

2) Package your content. Ensure the content is considered newsworthy and that the information is packaged so that the media sees it as relevant to their audience. Include all pertinent details as well as imagery.

3) Do your research. PR is more than just sending a press release — Impacting and targeting the press is an art, not a science. You can have a great story to tell, but if you don’t target it the appropriate media, it may not get heard. Build organic relationships with media, get to know their respective beat and craft a creative, tailored pitch to get their attention, create buzz and drive results.

It’s important to be cognizant of the media’s needs: be prompt, aware of deadlines, be knowledgeable of the media’s format and frequency, and follow up! Then journalists will come to you as a trusted source.

Emanuele Breccia, account supervisor, FleishmanHillard

My Communications Background

Emanuele Breccia is a Media Relations Strategist at FleishmanHillard in New York. During his tenure at FH, Emanuele has championed the convergence of Digital and Media Relations applying an innovative digital mindset and infusing analytics into the old world of media relationships. Additionally, Emanuele has played a fundamental role in helping his Fortune 500 clients — including Cadillac, Samsung and Chase — become lifestyle brands by identifying their intrinsic strengths and pivot them to develop compelling lifestyle stories around their brands and products.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

1. Know your audience — While in the past we could only rely on one-on-one interactions to get to know reporters, nowadays we have an unprecedented amount information right at our fingertips. Author pages, personal websites, Twitter, LinkedIn or Instagram are all great channels to find out what reporters like, what makes them tick, how they like to receive information, what topics they focus on etc. Knowing your targets and how they operate means increasing the odds of a story being picked up, developing stronger relationships and avoiding annoying our media friends.

2. Make it timely — More often than not, timeliness is the deciding factor on whether a story gets published or not. Outside of big news announcements or product releases, the question you need to answer first with your pitch is Why now? Your story or pitch is more likely to be picked up by media if it’s pegged to a larger trend or broader news, allowing you to authentically insert your brand, product or service into a larger conversation and make it relevant. A few examples: Your service addresses a particularly pressing and new consumer need. Your spokesperson can provide insight into a larger market trend affecting your industry. You can provide data and/or statistics that shed light onto the potential future success of the buzziest product category.

3. Video is king — As newsrooms continue to shrink and video production outsourced, PR professionals need to provide high-quality content that is inherently shareable and package assets in a way that helps media tell a compelling story across digital platforms. The key is to put your media hat on and refrain from providing overly-branded and/or self-serving content. Whether it’s high-production b-roll, text-overlaid videos or raw footage, assets need to assist media in creating their own content.

Katie Olver CEO Cryptoland PR

My Communications Background

Longtime tech publicist, Katie Olver is founder and CEO of Cryptoland PR. Katie and her team oversee the publicity for the world’s largest and most promising blockchain companies. As well as continually delivering mainstream coverage across the globe, the team have helped clients raise millions of dollars in fundraising, and Katie uses her extensive technology background to elevate awareness of the potential of blockchain technology to disrupt every industry.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

Research The Journalist.

The most important thing you can do is research the journalist you are about to contact and make sure they are the right one. Know their patch. Read or watch what they cover, and check out their LinkedIn and Twitter. Research takes time, but it’s often the difference between whether you get your client coverage or not.

Pitch, Pitch and then Pitch some more.

This is a numbers game. Why? Because there are too many journalists, too many stories, too many angles, and too many opportunities you might miss by pitching a handful of journalists. Build a tiered media list of where you need to get coverage and work those lists until you do. A short (2–3 paragraphs) personal pitch packed with details that gets right to the point wins every time.

Think Outside Your Market.

Think about the client’s long game and who might potentially use their product in the future? Can you make a compelling pitch to a reporter in a new market? By pitching outside of the client’s core market, you can not only position your client as a market leader but tap into some good media coverage and generate an entirely new sales funnel for their business.

Kean Graham, CEO, MonetizeMore

My Communications Background

Kean is the CEO of MonetizeMore, an 8-figure ad tech company that is a Google Certified Partner with 90+ full-time team members remotely based across the planet. MonetizeMore was conceived in the mountains of Machu Piccu and has grown to $17M in revenues. Kean has traveled to over 70 countries during the 8 years that he has been growing MonetizeMore.

My Top Strategies To Earn Media Placement

HARO: An incredible tool to reach reporters that are interested in writing about your business or expertise.

Networking: Meet these reporters in-person, offer to get on calls with them to disclose all the latest trends in your industry and share and comment on their articles to keep top of mind.

Guest Articles: Send proposals for them to publish your guest article that is relevant to their audience, not self-promotional and is about an interesting trending topic from a unique perspective.

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