Step 11 - Part Two of working with PR and the Press/Media

Published on 19th April 2019

Step 11 - Part Two of working with PR and the Press/Media

When you are writing a press release you need to make sure you have a great story. The fact that you are interesting and offer a great service is simply not enough. The best stories are human stories for example one of your clients success stories (used with their permission). But something slightly unusual is likely to get more coverage. Do you treat animals for example? Your story needs to resonate with the reader so make sure you do your research as to which publications to target and who the reader is likely to be. Once again if you have a niche you would target the media accordingly. If you specialize in working with pregnant women then maternity magazines seem an obvious choice. Be careful here though. We once were featured in the Daily Mail with a piece about baby massage. Wow, fantastic you would think huh! In fact we were absolutely deluged with calls –99% of whom we couldn’t help as they were too far away. A local piece would have been much better. So if you specialize in pregnancy the local National Childbirth Trust newsletter would be a far better and easier publication to target.

When you send a press release, make sure you include pictures as they paint a 1,000 words and when you are following up the release with a phone call, which you must do consistently, time your call when the journalist is not meeting a deadline for going to print- they will be frantic!

Take care of advertorial offers. This is a cross between and advert and an editorial piece that you buy at quite a price. Buyers can see through it and the basic rule of advertising is that an advert needs to be seen about 6 times before it is really noticed, now that is really expensive!

It is not totally unlikely that as your expertise develops you will be invited for an interview. Be prepared! It could happen completely out of the blue!

Here are some tips of what to do when being interviewed by the media, courtesy of Yvonne Wilcox, from the institute of complementary medicine.

 

General Tips:

  • Find out exactly what the publication/broadcast medium or audience is that you are being interviewed.
  • Ask what the topic of the interview is and to which other people/organizations they will be speaking.
  • If possible, try and gain some extra preparation time by asking what the topic will be about and then asking the interviewer to call back at a more convenient time.
  • If it is a telephone interview, ensure you will not be distracted. If possible, try and find a room in which to carry out the call where there will be no disturbances or loud noise.
  • If you do not understand the question, do not hesitate to ask for clarification.
  • If there is a particular point you are unsure of, tell the interviewer you will get back to them when you have checked.
  • Have a paper and pen.
  • Turn off your mobile phone.

If you are in front of the camera:

  • Make sure you are in a comfortable position before you start.
  • Make sure your clothes are comfortable. Try not to wear something for the first time.
  • Try not to ‘talk with your hands’.
  • Remember your body language, expressions and voice tone all help to win the audience over.

Other points to remember:

  • Use examples and anecdotes appropriate to the audience

 

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