Developing positive relationships with the media can boost your brand awareness and help you stay top of mind when you’re trying to grow. According to a report on the global PR Market, experts expected an 11.1% Compound Annual Growth Rate by the end of 2022. This is because businesses are striving to recuperate and re-organize their operations following the COVID-19 aftermath. By developing positive media relationships, these brands can reach out to the public effectively.
Various businesses now realize the vital role media relations play in heightening brand awareness. By generating positive coverage in the media, you can earn a better reputation than the one you would earn through paid advertisements.
What’s more, positive media relationships also come with bonus benefits that include third-party endorsements and organic traffic. So, how can you build positive relationships with the media? Well, here are some tips to help you with that:
1) Create a list of ideal reporters
The first and most important step in building positive relationships with the media starts with building a list of ideal reporters. In other words, you should come up with a list of potential journalists you would like to contact. Keep in mind that your business story will not align with the interests of all the reporters on your list. As such, it’s important to focus on those that cover your niche.
Building a media list will enhance the chances of your story being covered. More importantly, it will ensure your efforts pay off since you’ll be pitching your story to interested parties.
When you’re creating your media list, it’s important to consider your target audience and where you can find them. For instance, are you targeting the general public or specific audiences? Once you’ve narrowed down the right audience, you should focus on collecting contacts and email addresses. This information will help you when your story is ready and it’s time to reach out.
2) Engage with the work of your target reporters
Once you have the list of target journalists ready, don’t rush into contacting them immediately. It’s impolite to reach out right away before you’ve even engaged with their work. Instead, start by acknowledging and appreciating their work. One of the best ways to do this is by following them on social media.
You can also like their content, comment on it, and share their work with your network. This will help build recognition for you and your brand. Through this interaction, the journalist will recognize your presence and will be more likely to respond to your messages. After all, interacting with them shows that you are interested in what they’re doing.
3) Craft your pitches
Keep in mind that reporters or journalists receive tons of pitches daily. Since so many other brands are vying for their attention, a lengthy story will not help you get recognized. However, if you focus on a short and punchy pitch for your story, you can definitely grab their attention.
Your elevator pitch must be straightforward, short, and to the point. While it’s important to provide insight into your business, the more direct you are, the better your chances of getting feedback from the reporter or journalist. To be on the safe side, research effective ways to write and polish your pitch before sharing it.
3) Build a personal relationship independent of the business aspect
You should go beyond the formal and transactional approach when building positive relationships with the media. To increase the chances of your story being published, consider building a personal relationship that’s not driven by business. Besides publication, this approach will guarantee the quality and consistency of your business stories. After all, once a journalist knows your brand more personally, they’re also likely to write more authentic stories.
To implement this, it’s important to show interest in the personal life of your target reporters. You can arrange to meet up over coffee and share ideas. While salesmanship still plays a role in this relationship, you should also avoid making it the centerpiece of your conversations.
4) Offer exclusives
Obtaining media coverage is not something simple – you’re competing with other brands to get your story published. Luckily, you can stand out from the competition by offering exclusives. If you offer a journalist an exclusive, make sure you honor your word, otherwise, you will ruin your relationship with them.
Only after your story is published can you share it with other outlets. Offering a journalist an exclusive increases the appeal of your story tenfold. After all, journalists always want to be the first to break a story. Furthermore, it will also boost your relationship with the media since they’ll appreciate the privilege of being the only outlet to share your story.
5) Stick to your personality and be genuine
If you want a better relationship with the media, honesty and authenticity are vital. For starters, sharing a false story about your business can backfire on you. Oftentimes, this even creates a public scandal or PR nightmare that’s challenging to handle.
On the other hand, being authentic pays if you want positive media coverage. However, overhyping your story can ruin your chances of being published. This is because media personalities are pros at sniffing out deception. For this reason, it’s best to stick to a true, genuine, and polished story while allowing your personality to stand out naturally.
6) Share resources
This is one of the best ways to improve your relationship with media personalities. By sharing insightful research data, you’ll be making their work easier. However, avoid sharing irrelevant resources as they can negatively affect your story. Instead, focus on important resources that could ease a journalist’s burden during research. For instance, you can share the results of an industry study from your brand to help the journalist with the story. Share expert opinions on the subject matter and look for other ways to help the journalist write an interesting story.
4) Keep in touch after your story is published
It’s important to stay in touch even after a journalist publishes your story. Cutting ties with a reporter after they’ve gone to the trouble of writing and publishing a story for you is a good way to sour your relationship with them by making them feel like a means to an end. If you make this mistake, then you shouldn’t expect this journalist to be receptive to any future pitches from your brand.
It’s important to maintain the interaction both at the business and personal level. Send useful story leads to the reporter, even when they don’t directly benefit your brand. Offer to introduce them to other industry experts who can be valuable sources for future stories.
By simply keeping in touch, it will be easier to connect with the journalist the next time you have a story to publish. As you strive to maintain communication after coverage, timing matters. Since journalists are busy individuals, identify when the best time to connect with them is before you reach out. When they feel like you respect their time, they’re more likely to be receptive to your pitches.
5) Improve your brand’s image
By building a positive relationship with the media, you can also build brand awareness. After all, media professionals have a lasting impact on public perception of your brand.
How Pressfarm can help
Do you need help crafting a striking pitch that will help get your story published by media outlets? The experts at Pressfarm can help you develop newsworthy content that will sell your brand effectively. With a professional press release, some compelling guest posts, and an appealing media kit, you can stand out in your industry.
Additionally, Pressfarm leverages a rich network of media contacts to build a custom media list that helps you connect with the best media professionals in your industry. By reaching out to these contacts, you can share your brand story widely and win more clients over to your brand.
If you need to develop a winning brand image and build a larger client base, a PR package from Pressfarm could be exactly what you need.