Whether you distributed a news release through email or though a news release distribution service like PR Newswire or Business Wire, it’s a guarantee that not all the media you want to target have read your news release. Some media are receiving hundreds and hundreds of emails a day. There is not enough time in the day to take every phone call and read every email.
So how do you break through the clutter? It’s all about relationship building and media follow-up calls.
There are a variety of ways and things to consider when building media relations.
• Provide quality news: Be sure you are sending media contacts quality material and are targeting each contact directly based on their publication/beats. If you continue to send information that is not relevant, you can be certain the media contacts are not going to be receptive to your information.
• Be responsive: When media needs something ensure you are delivering what they need, when they need it no matter how short the deadlines are.
• Don’t just talk at media: Start a conversation. Discover more about their needs and how you might help them.
• In person meetings: Nothing helps build a relationship better than meeting a contact in person. This can be accomplished at trade shows, by scheduling editorial board meetings or individual desk side media interviews. Just be sure you utilize the media’s time wisely.
Media Follow-Up Calls
We cannot stress how important media follow-up calls are. This is helps support relationship building and gives you an opportunity to talk with the media. A few things to consider when conducting media follow up calls.
• Don’t call media and say “I’m following up on a news release I sent you.” Develop a pitch you can share that grabs the media’s attention. Keep it short.
• Expect lots of voicemails: Getting media on the phone can be challenging. Be prepared to call back numerous times in order to get a live person on the phone.
• Don’t continue to leave voicemails over and over. Consider leaving one message and continuing to call until he/she answers.
• Don’t just talk at media: Start a conversation. You can learn more this way and hopefully receive some feedback on why he or she is or isn’t interested in your news.