Five elements of newsworthy for business

How do you get into the news? You can’t just send a press release that looks like a sales sheet and get coverage.

As with everything we start with in public relations: look at the audience. Remember when dealing with the media you have TWO audiences–the media itself and their audience. Be sure you’ve targeted the media most likely to be the news platform your target audience is connecting too.

For the News factor, you need to know what is news. The majority of news today seems to be either conflict, celebrities or the bizarre. But to get news attention as your business try

  • Opportune: define what in your business is NO—expanding space and going green while you’re at it? New invention?
  • Planned timeliness: CPAs can always provide tax advice before April. Healing arts specialists can make suggestions in January when people are starting fitness resolutions or overdoing their resolutions.
  • Prevailing: describe the long term solutions what you offer provides.  Bringing new businesses to the area? Expanding Nevada products to overseas markets? Impacting the educational assessment tools to help school systems be more proficient?
  • Mutual: discuss the benefits large numbers of people would be interested. This one gets tricky–this isn’t a commercial and you can’t love your stuff so much that you can’t see when you are writing one. More likely provide info from a case study proving the community improvements your product makes. Another example, a contractor client uses a paint that helps reduce energy costs and could have been a preventative coating when fires raged through our community.
  • Personal: people do business with people they know, like and trust. Look for news opportunities to showcase either you or an employee. Not the time to be modest, it’s okay to apply for those “15 minutes of fame” type stories. Really can’t see yourself featured, perhaps you can pitch the story based on a client that you helped. Or do a company philanthropic effort that features your business giving back to the community.

There are two types of news: Things that go boom and everything else. Keep in mind your story may not make it if there is a community emergency, a natural disaster, business blight or, you get the idea. Be considerate of the news outlets’ deadlines. And be sure to use appropriate media release format. Remember too that you can always put your news article on your website, even if the “news” doesn’t pick it up. See you in the news!

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