The average person sees approximately 4,000 to 10,000 advertisements in a single day. Your target audience is also being inundated with daily headlines from a wide range of news outlets covering an even wider range of topics. So how can you break through the noise?

One of the best ways to elevate your brand’s message is to secure earned media coverage in top-tier publications that are guaranteed to be read by large audiences. These placements are known as earned media, a form of publicity – but you don’t pay anything as you would with advertising or sponsored opportunities. Earned media placements act as third-party endorsements and effectively earn the trust of your target audiences. They also help quickly convert viewers into customers and fans!

Gaining the attention of top-tier journalists is no easy task, but here are a few tips that will help you secure great coverage:  

Think Like a Journalist

Thinking like a journalist requires that you are consistently on the lookout for information about things that haven’t happened before. After all, the news is about what is new! A journalistic mindset makes you a better writer as you will get into the habit of looking for nonobvious things to craft a compelling pitch. Journalists know their audiences, so before you begin to write a pitch, make sure you know who you are writing for, what they have been writing about recently and what their views are. Put yourself in your target audience’s shoes…find out what they would want to know and then craft your pitches tying to that information. You need an angle that piques curiosity, an attention-grabbing subject line and a short – but compelling email – that instantly provides value. To further strengthen your pitch, include relevant data and statistics. For example, a great way to grab the attention of a journalist is to include a statistic in the subject line of your email.

Tie Your Message to Trending News

Journalists writing for top-tier media outlets are interested in stories that inform their readers about what’s happening in the world. There are times when your company news will stand on its own, but in most cases, successful pitches connect your business to what’s already happening in the news. “Newsjacking” is when you piggyback on a big news story and tie it to your product or service. A successful pitch strategy involves positioning yourself or your brand to contribute to ongoing trends and discussions in the news cycle.

For example, has your business implemented something new that will make your target audience’s life easier post-pandemic? Is there breaking industry news your CEO can provide a unique perspective on? Is there something happening in the news that your product or service can help with or your company can provide unique insights on? These are just a couple of ways that you can think outside of the box — and more like a journalist when pitching story angles to the media. By projecting and forecasting trends, our agency works alongside our clients to plan updated strategies for each new year. For example, in 2023, we will see social consciousness continue to grow in importance to consumers, partnerships with influencers becoming more beneficial, and audiences craving authenticity more than ever.

Respond Quickly and Thoroughly

Once you have a top-tier journalist on the hook, you need to reel them in. It’s no surprise that journalists often list poor responsiveness as one of their biggest pet peeves when working with a source. Make sure to be available when your pitch goes out. In most cases, the early bird gets the worm, and failing to respond quickly can kill your chances of securing coverage. Even weekly or monthly publications may be working on online stories where fast response is crucial, and it is vital to respect a journalist’s deadline…and beat it if you can! With quick-turn requests, a short response with a juicy soundbite will fare much better than a long-winded one. By building trust with top-tier journalists, you open the door for future opportunities. When you respond quickly, respect their deadlines and provide accurate information, they know they can depend on you as a reliable source. At Hemsworth, we have an alias email system in place for all accounts to ensure no email is missed. By having our full team included in every communication, our clients can rest easy knowing their responses will be submitted to the media well in advance of each deadline.

If you’d like to boost your chances of securing top-tier coverage, employing the services of a skilled public relations agency provides opportunities to reach media contacts you may not have access to on your own. At Hemsworth, we have spent years cultivating relationships with newsrooms and journalists writing for top-tier media outlets. These relationships provide ongoing opportunities to secure coverage in our clients’ target media outlets, as well as features and angles in stories that would have been missed otherwise.

With a thoughtful approach to strategy, we make sure that all our clients’ messages generate interest and produce impactful results, ensuring their goals for media coverage are not only met, but surpassed!

Contact [email protected] for a free consultation and more details on how we can help enhance your brand communications efforts.