Successful public relations (PR) is all about connection — maintaining existing relationships and forging new ones in an effort to expand your reach and brand recognition. That’s where media outreach, also known as PR outreach, comes into play. It is the act of reaching out to relevant journalists, influencers, and outlets in an effort to introduce your company and secure media coverage.
As technology has evolved, so has the approach and desired outcomes of media outreach. Today, your company’s digital footprint, including backlinks and coverage in online sources, and on social media channels as well as podcast appearances and digital advertisements, matters more than ever.
Below, we discuss three tips for effective media outreach as well as two recent successes for our clients.
Three Tips for Effective Media Outreach
- Develop a plan and materials: First, develop a pitch: Think about what facts will most attract consumers to your client’s company or product. Keep it short and sweet, making it easily digestible for the receiving reporter. Next, pull together a targeted media list. Figure out the channels you want to pursue (print, online, podcast, and social media, to name a few options), and then, focus on the publications, shows, or profiles that best fit with your subject matter. From there, look at your current network of journalists and see if you have any existing contacts — as we mentioned earlier, relationships matter! If needed, check out what journalists covered similar stories and look for their contact information. You can also peruse their social media feeds to determine their interests.
- Do your research: 80 percent of publishers say that the number one reason they decline a pitch is due to lack of research. Your media list should dig deeper than the outlet name and journalist’s name and email address. Look closely at the website or podcast and explore the topics they’ve covered recently. Where does your pitch best fit? What value does your client bring to their brand or company? Include detailed notes on your media list, and personalize every pitch you send. Catering your approach to each contact takes time, but it’s well-worth the effort!
- Make a connection: Publishers receive between 50 and 500 pitches per week, and writers cover at most a single story per day. Given these numbers, it’s important to capture their attention with your opening line. It’s helpful if your pitch is relevant too. Try to tie your offering to a recent news story or current event.
A Silver Lining Client Case Studies
Earlier this spring, we completed local media outreach for Urban Dog Group, hoping to expand their brand awareness among Central Florida residents. Given the company’s love of dogs and continual work for pet rescue organizations in the community, a guest blog post for the Pet Alliance of Greater Orlando was the perfect fit. Additionally, we coordinated an upcoming interview in OrlandoVoyager Magazine with founder Christine Elias.
In addition to traditional research, media list building, and outreach, you can also use websites like Help a Reporter Out to secure coverage. Here, journalists share their upcoming story needs, and PR associates can reply back and offer up a client who fits the topic. Recently, ASL coordinated an interview for Dr. Kelli Malkasian, PsyD, CEDS with a journalist for Health Magazine’s website, which reaches over 7 million digital consumers. With multiple mentions in the article, including a link to Coral Reef Counseling’s homepage in an introductory paragraph, this effort brought great national exposure to Dr. Malkasian’s work.
If you’re looking to develop a digital marketing strategy and expand your online reach, please reach out to us today! Note that we’re accepting new clients through the end of July. You can also join a waitlist for our 2022 openings!