September 13, 2011 Leave a comment
Your best stories might not be your product or your service; your best stories illustrate your value. Where most people get lost when trying to come up with story angles or media hooks to launch their PR campaigns is that they focus on what is important to them, as opposed to what would interest the media. It’s an easy trap to fall into and one that railroads most public relations campaigns. So what makes for a good story or pitch idea? Remember, your focus is on the media and the media’s focus is on their readers, viewers or listeners. If you can pitch a writer a story that is going to interest their readers, or a TV producer a segment idea that is going to hook their viewers, you’re going to succeed.
But again the most difficult part is being able to step back and come to terms with the possibility that the story that you want to get in the media may very well not be the story that the media is interested in. So, for now, forget your product or service and focus on your value. How to you impact people’s lives? Do you help people make more money? Do you save them time and effort? Do you help them lose weight? Do you make them healthier? Focus on what you do for your clients or customers. Keep in mind that your best stories are often your client success stories. Make a list of clients or customers who have interesting impactful stories they can tell. You want these stories to illustrate how lives were changed or transformed by working with you or buying your product or service.
Contact the appropriate clients, explain how their stories can help educate and inform others who are dealing with similar problems or issues.
If the stories include before and after photos, make sure to get images that are as professional as possible. Have your clients sign a release form.
Match the various patient stories to the appropriate media outlets. For example a story about weight loss, would be pitched differently than a story about a new financial product.
Meet with the clients and review the questions that the media could ask them. Make them as comfortable as possible with the process. Remember, these clients are not only telling their stories, they’re representing you and your business. You want them to be articulate the presentation to be accurate and appropriate.
When talking to a client about the process, explain what would be involved and see if they’d be willing to talk to the media. Keep in mind that often this can amount to free PR for them, so it can be presented as a win-win arrangement. The media gets a good story, your client can often mention his or her business and you are presented as a solution to a problem. Not a bad deal.
Copyright © Anthony Mora 2011