If you wish to get the eye of the press, you have to consider such as the press.
In the 20+ years I've been in public areas relations, one of the most difficult elements of the game to show clients is that the press is not a service organization whose sole purpose is to cover what PR people pitch them. Their business model is easy; they exist to see and entertain their readers, so they can grow their subscriber base and sell advertising against those numbers.
So, if you wish to be involved in the "press game" it is essential to acknowledge what wins the press loyal readers and increases their circulation...and then make them to accomplish it! The 1st step is to obtain together a power-packed pitch. According to the Associated Press Stylebook preferred term for a media release is not press release; it's NEWS release. All things considered, it's not called a press-paper - it's called a NEWSpaper. Like it or not, public relations people don't get to find out what the headlines is. Only news professionals get to achieve that once they choose what to write, print or air.
So, simply because your company opened a new store in Cincinnati, doesn't ensure it is NEWS. However, there could perfectly be a nugget of newsworthiness as possible offer up to the press in order to get them thinking about the opening of one's store.
Where do you discover those nuggets? Here really are a few suggestions to assist you mine the headlines gold in all your announcements:
Read Your Local Newspapers -You can't locate a news hook until you know what the headlines of the day actually is. And, because it changes each and every day, you will need to stay on the surface of the news (or hire an agency to perform that function for you personally, and trust their judgment once they advise you of potential news hooks).
Determine How Your Story is Relevant - This is the lowest hanging fruit in the headlines hook orchard trend press news. Look for anything in your business that is highly relevant to news taking devote your community or nationally. If you're opening a new bicycle shop in Los Angeles, then do some news searches to see what reporters have already been authoring the area.
Say you discover that the area is economically depressed, by which case you can pitch to the press the indisputable fact that a new retailer opening there is a boost to the area economy, and that you're prepared to take a chance on success in that community. Or you could discover that bicycle ridership has increased nationally by 10 percent over the last year, with new riders indicating they've started as they are hoping to get fit. Now you can pitch the area press on the angle that your new shop is targeted at capitalizing on this national trend.
This strategy is called "localizing" a national story, which every newspaper and TV producer loves. Because it's a national story, they are going to report it anyway, but they'd prefer to really have a local hook so they can become more highly relevant to the area audience.
Develop Stories That Have a Beginning, Middle and End - Make sure you tell reporters a complete story. Let's use the bicycle shop being an example. Opening a bicycle shop might not be a lot of a story alone, but what's the story behind the story? Did the owners overcome any unusual obstacles in fulfilling the dream of opening their store? Was the owner ever a competitive bicyclist? Have the owners used their familiarity with the activity or inventory to simply help any children's charities or causes? Are they active within their community? Identify the story behind the story, and you'll have plenty of opportunities to discover a news hook that's relevant.
Take Action - There's a reason why so many commercial enterprises and not-for-profit charities and community organizations partner up for special events - it's a win-win situation for everyone. It's important for every commercial enterprise to be a good citizen and use some of their resources to simply help others, and in addition it helps to make sometimes un-newsworthy events relevant. Opening a bicycle shop isn't a large deal, but holding a grand opening event for a nearby children's charity makes the opening more relevant. If the owners use the event to simply help raise money and donate excess inventory to needy children, it is both a valuable venture and a really heartwarming feel-good story worthy of news coverage.
Helping people must be its reward, obviously, but that's also why newspapers and charities love these events. It not merely gives editors and TV crews something joyful and happy to report, but it also enables the charities to obtain their messages out to town at large. Your organization improves its public image, and deservedly so, provided that the help is genuine and comes not from the pocketbook, but from the heart.
By the end of the day, all of the time you can find news hooks in even probably the most mundane of news releases. The key thing to keep in mind is that the focus of the release isn't to market, sell, sell - it's to convince a reporter that you have news to report and that their readers will be informed or entertained by that which you have to inform them.