Small businesses require as much media coverage as they can get. While reaching out to the media and attempting to get press coverage is easy, getting the correct and necessary amount of publicity is the hard part. Journalists receive an overabundance of pitch submissions, and do not have the time or resources to go through each and every one. A small business must be on the same page as the journalists they are working with. Having a compatible working relationship with journalists can go a long way for the future of a small business, so it is important to understand how to effectively work with journalists.
One of the more powerful approaches in working with journalists is using permission based PR. This approach increases the chances of journalists publishing your material. Previously, the standard way of reaching out to journalists was to send a pitch email and a media release. Although this may work with some journalists, the newest and more efficient way of accessing journalists is using the permission based PR approach.
Small business starting up do not have the credibility that a larger, or established business may have, so the approach you take with a journalist can either make or break the chances of your businesses success. The first step is identifying the journalists you wish to target. Each journalist is different, and some may be more receptive to your specific material than others. When searching for journalists to write about an upcoming or previous bridal show, it is important to do research on the local journalists. By understanding what journalists have written about in the past, you can pick and choose who you wish to contact. Some journalists may have a higher interest in bridal or wedding related articles than others. Once deciding which journalists you wish to contact, the model of permission based PR takes effect.
Permission based PR is as self descriptive as it can get. Once identifying the journalists you feel will most likely publish your work, reach out to them a month in advance. A simple email is all that in necessary, containing a short introduction about yourself and what your company does, and asking for permission to send them pitches in the future. Asking several other straightforward questions can also be beneficial, such as what kind of writing style they prefer, or how much notice they like to have in advance of the needed publication date.
This approach in reaching out to journalists can help your small business achieve results that go far beyond the goals of your company. As stated before, journalists receive countless amounts of pitches, and will only chose the ones that stand out the most. By establishing a working relationship via the initial email, journalists will be more responsive in the future endeavors of your company.
Once getting a basic understanding about what journalists look for in the initial pitch, it only makes it easier in dealing with journalists from that point forward. By using the permission based PR approach effectively, your small business will gain respect throughout local journalists and news outlets. The initial pitch is your company’s chance at getting their foot in the door, which is why it is vital to be polite, creative, professional, and straightforward in your email. This is the first impression a journalist is getting from not only yourself, but your company as well. By establishing a positive image of yourself and your company, both parties will gain respect among local journalists, therefore increasing the credibility of your small business.
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