Earning Media Coverage: 4 Ways to Make it Newsworthy
The media is always looking for the next big story – something that is going to capture the attention of their audience and keep them coming back for more information. And there is always one question reporters ask when trying to decide if your pitch is worth pursuing: is it newsworthy? Now I know what you’re thinking: everything my company does is worth mentioning. While that may be the consensus internally, not everyone externally is going to agree.
So before you ask your agency to send out every announcement, here are four questions you can ask yourselves before deciding if your story is newsworthy:
Is your story timely?
The media is working around the clock to give people the most up-to-date information on what is going in real time. Reporters will most likely want to cover your announcement if they will be the first to break it or if they can tie it into a timely story they are already covering. Play up the immediacy factor in your pitch and make sure you have a media-trained spokesperson on standby for any interviews. And if your pitch isn’t timely, think of some ways you can insert yourself into the conversations already happening: identify a representative from your company to comment on a current hot topic of conversation; offer media an expert for a story they are working on to give it a new perspective; and look for outlets that give you the opportunity to write opinion pieces.
Is there something unique?
News needs to be interesting enough to publish. The media is looking for that “wow” factor. Reporters read through hundreds of emails a week, so you want to make sure your story is going to stand out among the rest. This can be achieved in many different ways: being the first to achieve something, an executive-level change within your company, closing a high-dollar deal, etc. Before you pitch the story, make sure it is something people outside of your company will care about. Just because your employees are excited about the fancy new carpet in your headquarters office doesn’t mean anyone else will be.
Is there human interest?
People are interested in knowing what is going on in their community. This could mean a heartwarming or a heartbreaking story. And if you have an announcement that will directly impact the readers of the story, that is definitely something to highlight. Think of ways your company is involved throughout the community and highlight what they are doing to make a difference. And to go above and behind, think about inviting local media to an event that is happening in their community. Which brings me to the final point …
Is it local?
Let’s say you have an exciting event coming up in one of the areas your company is located in and you want to invite local media to come and cover it. The best thing to do is work with your agency to identify the most appropriate local media to invite. An event or announcement in one of your locations may not be of interest to people outside of the region. Do research before pitching media so you don’t waste your time or theirs.
Wondering if your next announcement is newsworthy? Contact us to start the conversation.