If you think your inbox is overflowing with junk messages and stuff you don’t care about, what if it were 100x worse?
This is what reporters are trying to manage.
Every. single. day.
Plus, their jobs are all about tight deadlines, breaking news, crabby bosses, and low pay.
It's nothing new.
Before technology, reporters were drained by irrelevant faxes and phone calls.
Pointless pitches that aren't clearly valuable to their audiences.
Maybe you're wondering why you get crickets when emailing a 3-page self-serving story idea about your book???
You know, the one with 6 attachments, 27 links, and 14 questions.
Reporters need to see something interesting that jumps off the screen.
So how do you grab the attention (and trust) of the media so that you land a coveted interview?
When you know why your story is relevant to a reporter and their audience, there's a shift.
You have to know what...
A magazine reporter, Rasheeda, emailed me to request an interview.
No press releases.
Rasheeda—who writes about nonprofit associations—contacted me late Monday.
After exchanging four quick emails, we had the logistics down and the phone interview confirmed for Tuesday morning.
How did Rasheeda find me?
I had been showing up and offering free resources and value in a group we both belong to (not on Facebook)
Rasheeda was watching.
That was in early 2020.
She first contacted me in March, 2020 when the pandemic hit.
Rasheeda was interviewing a few PR people about the importance of nonprofits having crisis communication plans.
She had seen my posts and poked around my website.
The article ran, I thanked her and that was it.
Within just three months of Rasheeda’s first article...
Hundreds of people over the years have asked me why reporters and podcasters are so dang hard to reach.
Why are they grumpy, uninterested and non-responsive?
Here’s the secret:
Ninety-five percent of the pitches and “great story ideas” that are sent are irrelevant. They aren't newsworthy. They aren't valuable and “worthy” of an audience’s attention and interest.
It's that simple.
I was a radio news reporter and on-air anchor. I received thousands of pitches during my 10-year career in newsrooms in New Jersey and New York.
I decided what was newsworthy. I was the gatekeeper.
My audience depended on my sound judgement to share important, compelling and interesting stories that affected them. The same is true today with reporters—and podcasters. They want subject matter experts—people like YOU!...
“If you want to attract media attention, think like a reporter.”
It’s something many professionals who want to be more visible must learn. But what does it mean? How do reporters think? And why do you need to be privy to this information?
You can’t effectively pitch stories to anyone in traditional or social media if you don’t understand how their minds operate.
How do journalists, bloggers and podcasters decide what is newsworthy and what gets tossed?
I was a news reporter. Please, allow me to share these five common rookie mistakes small business owners should avoid when looking for publicity:
Rookie Mistake #1. I can sell my products and services with an article, post or interview. It’s all about me! When pitching a self-serving story that fails to connect with a specific audience, you’re missing an...
In a perfect world, we could put a pushpin on a calendar date and plan out days, weeks and months of special events, announcements, contests and news to share. Wow, an entire road map of content, blog topics and email promos. It would work out just fabulously.
[RELATED: To continue learning about communicating with confidence and clarity, join Communication Nation on Facebook.]
Of course, anyone who has walked the planet for a few decades knows that social media—and breaking news—can quickly push our best-laid plans out the window. If the TV interview you’ve been working on for weeks has arrived but there’s a major earthquake in California, your big moment might be rescheduled—or axed. That’s why you—and your editorial calendar—must be flexible.
First Things First
Though content planning can bring challenges, savvy professionals still keep a framework in place.
Templates that allow you to easily track—and...
One of the things I missed the most when we moved from New Jersey to Texas is the change of seasons and opening the windows in our house.
In San Antonio, the air conditioning is on for 9 or 10 months. Of course, we're grateful to have AC in the steamy months. Still, I miss the change of seasons and cracking the windows in the house to enjoy the breezes and crisp air. It's refreshing and brings a new energy.
The same is true with work...businesses need to re-energize and take advantage of the many windows of opportunity that are often right in front of our faces.
For entrepreneurs and professionals who want publicity, there is a HUGE window of opportunity to get media attention and "free press"---right now!
NewsFlash: The next 3 months are fresh with topics and timely subjects for interviews and stories in print, radio and TV news (traditional)...
"This kind of thing never happens here."
How many times have you seen and heard that line in the midst of a breaking news story?
Business leaders who think a publicity crisis is "for someone else" are likely to get caught short when something unexpected happens. Hopefully it won't be a massive incident that the networks cover. Still, we must be realistic because a local story can negatively impact your brand reputation, hiring and revenue for years to come.
If a plane or truck crashes into your building, you may find yourself scrambling to craft a statement or press release. A white-collar crime or violent incident can also attract unwanted media attention.
The following 10 points will help you be proactive when dealing with reporters and the public.
1. Have a crisis management plan in place and update it once a quarter. This...
The days of B2B and B2C sales models never existed, according to business author Seth Godin.
During a recent interview, Godin told me that behind every business is a human being who makes purchasing decisions.
Transcript: (Seth Godin) “When you’re selling to a business, you’re not really selling to a business. Businesses don’t buy anything; people buy things.
The person at Ford buying brake lines, doesn’t need brake lines. They need a story to tell their boss. Because they’re not actually on the assembly line, they are the purchaser.
We sell stories. The shift now is that there’s way more people to connect with, which is good. But, those connections are way more difficult because there are way more people to connect with. So, we have this challenge. Which is stop being bureaucratic and understand that people are going to buy a story that increases their status based on what’s important to them.”
Austin, Texas was the backdrop for the Public Relations Society of Americas’ International Conference #PRSAICON2018.
What’s on the mind of PR pros these days?
The theme: Convergence and Communication covered a range of topics including conflicts, creativity and client relationships. Crunching numbers (data and measurement) was a hot topic as well.
The three-day event was packed with dozens of workshops, networking and impressive keynotes. Though I was one of the presenters, my greatest joy was sitting in the audience listening and learning from such knowledgeable and interesting peers.
We’re at a time in history when the media has become the scapegoat for what some claim is “fake news.” Others are attempting to clarify the obscured lines between trained journalists and the media. The conversations remain more...
Your email pitch hangs on eight words…or less.
The secret to gauging the interest of reporters and influencers who may want to interview you is complicated. The recipient must know from your subject line exactly what you have and why it’s relevant right now. Your goal: immediate clarity. In eight words or less.
A terrific pitch piques the interest of the reader because it’s about their audience. When pitching your story, forget cutesy. It's confusing and irritating to busy reporters. All they want you to do is make your point.
I’ve been on both sides of pitches, as a news reporter and anchor in a chaotic radio newsroom and as a publicity strategist working to get my clients media coverage.
Here are tips from the pros about what gets their attention when sifting through their inbox.
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