By Andrew Blum*
Getting into the right media outlets for clients is a key part of the client-agency relationship. For starters, find out what a new client’s PR goals and needs are in order to tailor your media outreach.
- First, find out what the key must-read industry trade publication, website or local hometown papers are. Then target them. If you can’t get ink in key trades, you may as well go home and call it a day.
- Talk to your client and see who is best to do an interview, whether it’s the CEO or a top executive. Help them craft messages, and ask if they have been media-trained; if not, get that done pronto.
- It may make sense if you’re dealing with the leading trade pub, website or hometown paper that you invite a reporter or a team of editors and reporters in for a get-acquainted meeting with your client.
- Once you have hit these mainstay outlets, you may start to get some media food chain pickup- but start going after other media, making sure that hits have been posted on social media as well.
- When you are looking at all levels of media for clients, consider the beat reporter for their company or industry, then expand out to other parts of the newspaper or other outlets.
- Start to position client executives as expert talking heads for the media. Make sure they have also been media trained in broadcast techniques; if you are doing a good job with print and online, you might get the media food chain to lead to some broadcast pick-up or one of your pitches may lead to radio or TV interviews.
- Think also of pitching bylined articles by your client to top publications and where appropriate, op-eds in local, regional or national papers.
- Play off of the news of the day in terms of local and national press and see how your client fits into ongoing stories.
Making your client a go-to source in the right outlets will keep the messages going strong. Review your strategy from time to time for continued success.
*Andrew Blum is a PR consultant and media trainer and principal of AJB Communications. He has directed PR for professional services and financial services firms, NGOs, agencies and other clients. As a PR executive, and formerly as a journalist, he has been involved on both sides of the media aisle in some of the most media intensive crises of the past 25 years. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow him on Twitter: @ajbcomms