Making News Out of Nothing at All
One of the most oft repeated statements heard in PR meetings to clients is that “what you consider as ‘nothing’ may actually be news we can pitch.” It sometimes takes the
brashness assertiveness of a media whore professional to help an organization see what news opportunities are available to them.
For example, the lowest hanging fruit may be the executive announcement, the tried and trued method of issuing a press release announcing a new hire (bonus points if you include a picture). It not only gets the name of the organization out there, but also shows that something is happening. Guaranteed placements will generally follow in your local daily newspaper, your market’s weekly business publication and any trades relevant to the industry you serve.
Events are valuable because they can be stretched into several news opportunities. Non-profits in Dallas will create photo opportunities out of planning luncheons, kickoff parties, underwriters’ parties, the pre-event, the main event, and the wrap-up party following. Each time, your name is out there along with the personalities behind your organization to create a context for what you’re doing.
And then there’s the breaking news pitch. I once earned a television placement for a client based on a story I read in the local paper about the Queen’s finances. We approached a local morning show about how our stockbroker client could hypothetically help the Queen allocate her money in the most efficient fashion. They bit, and we got the air time we desired.
Media are always seeking out good content to fill their space. If you take the time to make it timely, and tailor to the areas they’re used to covering, then they’ll take the time to fit you in.