How to Reach the Media – Approaches to PR
Get ready to share your news by following my top tips. Please subscribe to my YouTube channel to view forthcoming videos
Cathy Kelly has got more than 20 years’ experience of working within the industry, first working as a journalist, and then as a London PR consultant specialising in crisis management and PR for hospitals and health trusts.
She has written for and dealt with many media, setting up filming and various media interviews – most recently BBC’s The One Show. She’s worked with international and national publications and media outlets including The Times, The Telegraph, The Engineer, Business Insider and many green and sustainable media.
Approaches to PR – getting started
• Do you have a good story?
• Do you feel overwhelmed by the task of sharing it?
• Are you unsure how to collate your media list?
• Do you want to know how to contact journalists?
Hi, I’m Cathy from Catherine Kelly PR, and I’m going to be helping you to solve some of your PR pains, and one of the most common ones is how you actually get media coverage when you haven’t done it before.
You might be a director or communications manager or somebody responsible for communications within an organisation wanting to raise your profile or reach the media, and you just don’t know how to do it.
One of the easiest ways to do this is to search for publications online. You might want to start with something like Google and start looking at the industry that you’re trying to target. It might be the industry you work in, or it may be a related or parallel industry.
Another good free resource you can use is journalisted.com, which lists details of journalists and the sorts of subjects that they’re actually interested in and writing about at the moment.
Type of publications – look online – make a list
• Google is a good place to start
• Call media outlets for specific journalist’s contact details
• Search and connect with journalists on Twitter
• Look at your industry publications – online or hard copies
Research these by searching for publications- start on Google – you can also search and connect with journalists on Twitter – target the right journalist and then either looking up or calling for specific journalist names. Write to each journalist – with a summary at the top.
• Call journalists if you have time
• Research what they have written about on Journalisted.com
• Prepare – have an ‘elevator pitch’ – be succinct
• Explain your story and ask if you can send it to them
• Explore a press release distribution service like Newswire, these are expensive
• Use a PR firm, which will have or can create media lists and do the job for you
• Make it appealing, different and unique – is it really a story?
• If you’re no good at writing – delegate to someone who is!
• Always include a good, high resolution photograph with your press release
• Email your press release or piece of news to each journalist with a summary in the ‘Subject’
The other thing you need to think about doing is actually getting good, professional quality photography because publications and TV stations are always short of good images. So if your story carries a good image, you’re halfway there.
You also need to have a killer idea for your press release. If you’re not sure whether the idea you’ve come up with really works, then talk to a colleague or a team member or a family friend or somebody that can give you a good, honest opinion on what your strongest story should be, or you can consult an expert.
Do subscribe to my channel because I’m going to be adding new resources and publications all the time, and I’m also going to share with you towards the end of the video a link to a free template for a press release so that you know how to actually go about sharing the news with the media and presenting it in a format that they understand and feel reassured by. Journalists are busy people, so you need to make it as easy as possible for them and not make it feel like you’re just hitting them with a blanket email.
My name’s Catherine Kelly, and I’ve got more than 20 years’ experience of working within the industry. I’ve worked as a journalist, and I’ve also worked as a PR consultant writing for and dealing with the media, setting up filming and various media interviews. I’ve worked with international and national publications and media outlets including prime time television channels, publications such as Forbes, The Times, the Guardian, all the major ones.
I’ve got the experience, and I’m going to be sharing my top tips with you over the coming weeks and months because I know that these things work because we’ve tried and tested them over and over again.
I’m going to be sharing now with you a link to a template, and that is going to help you to actually start to put together your own press release and in another one of my videos, I’m going to be running through step-by-step how you would actually construct a press release and how you know whether that actually is a proper story.
Learn how to write a Press Release using my proven formula by downloading my free template at www.catherinekellypr.co.uk or visit my YouTube Channel to access more free resources over the coming weeks and months.
How to Reach The Media – Approaches to PR – where to start
Social media can be highly effective and more organisations are using it as part of their daily PR and marketing mix. It is also time consuming and knowing which platform is right for you and your audience is increasingly important as more and more platforms vie for our time and attention.
All social media platforms have their own demographics, but as well as a bit of number crunching, it’s just as important that you reach out to your audience as a ‘person’ and not as a faceless organisation. It’s OK to have personality and to be informal on social media – in fact it’s essential.
After all – that’s why it’s called SOCIAL MEDIA!
Social media options open to you
I’ve picked out some of the favourites and highlighted some useful demographics to help you make up your mind:
The mega social media giant Facebook, is still regarded as ‘THE’ social media platform of choice and not just for staying in touch with friends and family. In the UK it boasts 31 million users, with almost the same number of men as women using it. It’s so popular, that around 60% of us now have a Facebook account in the UK.
The age group of users is older – with 26 per cent in the 25-34 age group.
Although not all the younger generation will be active Facebook users, there are still 2.5 million 13-17 year-olds who use the site – a statistic not to be sneezed at.
The business networking site not surprising has a slightly older demographic with just 21 per cent under the age of 35. Men make up 58 per cent of the user share of its 60 million views each month in the UK. Its search functions are useful for seeking out potential customers and business partners as well as for recruitment. Who doesn’t check out their job candidates regularly on LinkedIn?!
With around half the users of Facebook, Twitter’s microblogging site still pulls in an impressive 15 million UK users – with two thirds under the age of 34. Nearly 80 per cent of people use their smartphones to access it – with an almost even split in the battle of the sexes. It’s not used as widely by teens with just 26 per cent citing it as their favourite social media platform.
Pinterest is one of the fastest growing platforms since being launched in 2010. And it’s popular with women – very popular – with around 80% of UK users being female. As well as ‘pinning’ users can send messages with infographics and photos – the most popular ‘pins’ are around food and drink, although a wide number of subjects and topics feature from motivation to friendship.
In complete contrast to its female dominated rival, Google + mainly appeals to men – 63 per cent of its 400 million worldwide users are male. Over a third live in America and have an above average salary. In the UK, users are mainly in the younger age groups – 41 per cent are between 18-24 and 29 per cent are aged 25-34. Nearly half haven’t tied the knot and are still single – not surprising, given the younger age of most users.