There’s clearly one huge topic currently dominating the news agenda, so how can you ensure that your brand and business still get media coverage and cut-through?
At Faith PR, we’ve found that certain tactics have helped. Arguably, they’re tactics that have always been important in order to do our jobs well, but they’ve become increasingly important over the past 12 months. Throughout the duration of the pandemic to date, PR has been essential and many brands have come to understand the importance of communicating with customers.
TIPS TO GET MEDIA COVERAGE
Build and nurture media contacts. With many journalists currently working from home and being uncontactable via phone, you’d think they’d be more responsive to emails but that’s not always the case. Existing relationships you’ve built with the media will help you cut through their inboxes and noise.
Have an opinion. Forget safe, bland quotes. Spokespeople with a point of view are more likely to make the news. Insightful and meaningful commentary is more important than ever.
Bespoke pitches. While there’s still a place for wider press release distribution, pitching in thought leadership and feature ideas tailored to a specific outlet has been a successful tactic for many of our clients recently. Take time to read the journalist’s content and tailor your pitch to them, and their readers, accordingly.
Do your research – related to the above point, invest the time in seeking out the most suitable outlets and contacts. Regularly research and check you’ve got the correct contacts. Many journalists were, or still are, furloughed, or teams have moved around – for example, the travel editor might have been moved to news or health. Make sure you’re therefore sending your news to the most suitable person. If you send it to a contact who’s no longer there, all your hard work in crafting your press release or pitch will be wasted.
Invest in photography. While it’s currently perfectly acceptable to submit lower quality photos (think new starter shots taken on Zoom!), our clients who have invested in professional photography (socially distanced of course) have undoubtedly had more space dedicated to their stories. For more tips on what makes a good PR photo, head over to our photography tips blog.
There is a place for positive news. Despite Covid-19 dominating the news agenda, there are still many journalists – and readers – crying out for uplifting, feel-good stories, particularly in local and business media. Stories on friends, families and communities are going to take centre stage. Look for the human angle and seek out those journalists covering positive news stories.
Be reactive, timely and flexible. With the news agenda rapidly changing and the dreaded ‘C’ word dominating most outlets, we have had to be more flexible and adapt our content strategies at short notice. That includes being reactive with content and piggybacking off the news agenda. It also requires a certain amount of flexibility and responsiveness from our clients – those who were quick to agree to a new approach, benefited. Good content that is timely will have legs and always get picked up.