An intrinsic part of public relations is working with the media. Media relations is the relation between public relations professionals and journalists.
The pandemic has brought about changes to the way people communicate and traditional means of communication have been replaced by more relevant means.
When pitching stories to the press, the important thing to know is how to be the PR person who levels with the media and tell journalists the way it is, clearly and honestly.
Given below are some important rules which need to be followed when working with the media in general.
It is important to choose the right story while engaging with the audience and the media. The idea of the story should align with the publication’s audience’s interests.
The story should be the best possible version of the chosen content of any topic.
This would not only help to get the story published, it would also help to establish the brand. Visuals, infographics and videos can also be added to the story.
If the content provides value, it will not only connect with prospects, it will also provide trust.
Create an Effective Media List
Journalists and bloggers who regularly write about a particular type of business and its products and services, should be on the media list of the PR professionals of that business.
Those who write on topics or trending stories on the news that the business is somehow connected to will be the most relevant.
Media lists should be regularly updated. An outdated media list might have people who no longer write on relevant topics. Research should be done ahead of time to make sure that a pitch reaches the right inbox.
Do not Miss a Deadline
The media live and die by the clock. It is essential not to miss a deadline.
If that has happened, it is important to send an apology to the journalist with a promise never to miss a deadline again.
Do not leave emails unanswered
For serious press, a PR professional has to be helpful and accessible.
The media should never be left hanging. If they are, they will move on to the next story that they are working on.
Journalists always look for straight facts and weaving a web of confusion never helps.
Remove jargon from the vocabulary
Using jargon is the quickest way to make the media glaze over with boredom.
Whatever is said should be easy to understand and should not require a lengthy explanation.
Use New Media Formats
Traditional media outlets are evolving and PR professionals should be ready to embrace different types of media formats such as podcasts or Zoom interviews.
New media outlets are growing in popularity and can provide new opportunities for a brand. Embracing new formats can also change the way PR agencies build and distribute their press releases and pitches to ensure maximum coverage.
New media formats also allow PR firms to remove time-consuming processes.
Matthew Caiola serves as Co-CEO at 5W Public Relations, managing the overall growth, direction and day-to-day business of the Corporate & Technology Communications Divisions and Digital Marketing.
With more than 17 years of PR experience, Matthew leads teams in launching and building high-growth tech companies, disrupting industries, building global brand resonance through thought leadership, C-Suite profiling, and speakers’ programs, as well as crisis communications across a variety of industries.