November 10, 2011 Leave a comment
There are hard and soft news stories. Unless your story is timely and generally relates to a breaking news story, chances are your pitch is going to fall in the soft news category. Hard news stories cover such topics as a war zone, or a political race or a natural disaster; soft news focuses on human interest oriented stories, such as a new technology product, or a story on a disabled runner participating in a marathon. The following are some media stories we pitched that worked. Each illustrates a different way of landing a story.
1) We worked with one client who was down to her last few dollars. She had developed some fashion-oriented products. It took some time, but they began to sell. She made it through the rough patch, built her business into a million dollar enterprise and created an amazing story that resonated with both the media and the public. Stories on her and her products, boosted sales, but they also gave entrepreneurs, particularly female entrepreneurs hope. This is a “yes you can” type of story that gets people excited about what the human spirit can accomplish.
2) We also placed a story on acupuncture facelifts. This was a more fun upbeat story. It combined health and beauty, offered TV a good visual and offered the acupuncturist an opportunity to discuss some of the other more health-oriented acupuncture treatments she offered. Unlike traditional facelifts the procedure was non invasive and made for a good TV segment.
3) There was also a story where grade school kids from a local elementary school “adopted” seniors who were living at an assisted living facility. This was a feel good story about kids giving to seniors and shattering the age barrier. It offered some good visuals, but also made for a good print feature story.
4) Still another revolved around a cosmetic company that made a product that camouflaged tattoos. We placed stories on how grooms use the product at their weddings and prospective employees use it at job interviews. This offered great visuals and allowed us to tailor the pitches to the specific media outlets we were approaching.
These generally fall into the soft news category. The following is one that is more in the hard news arena:
5) We pitched a story about a physician who was working on clinical trials for a new treatment for pancreatic cancer. The hospital was looking for people to participate in the trials. The stories reviewed what the treatment entailed and the type of trials they were running.
Public relations can be the least expensive and most effective means of getting your message to the public, policy makers and investors . But to be effective you need to recognize what a good story is and then create news stories related to your work that appeal to the media and the public. So study the media, learn the types of stories they run and pitch them accordingly.
Copyright © Anthony Mora 2011