- Posted by Noni Cavaliere
- On November 14, 2018
There’s a lot of information about writing press releases available out there, but knowing when it’s time to pitch a potential press release opportunity to your business owner or upper management may still be somewhat of a mystery for people who don’t work in publicity full-time. Press releases are not “old-school” modes of delivering your company’s information to the media. While the methods in which outreach to media is done has evolved and how spreading word-of-mouth information about your business is completed, press releases really haven’t changed.
The hardest step in publicity for seasoned professionals, or those just tasked inside their company with media assignments, is the strategy behind publicity and the outreach once you have your release. In this ‘part one’ piece, I’m going to walk you through understanding what constitutes a reason to use a press release and how to get your management or business owner excited about press release opportunities.
Is it Time for a Press Release?
Here’s a quick way to determine if your business is ready to go forward with a press release:
The obvious first question is: Would your story be worthy for the regional newscast?
If yes, time for question two: Does your news affect people outside of your business? If so, how?
After thinking about these questions, if you can define that yes, it’s a newsworthy topic. If it affects people outside of your staff and direct customer base, then yes, you’re headed in the right direction for a press release.
What is considered a newsworthy press release topic?
Simply put, a topic that affects people outside of your direct business and brings clarity to a topic your business is directly involved in.
Here’s a quick sample of some potential press release topics:
- Ecommerce store launch
- New product or service
- Contest/competition (prizes worth over $1k)
- Changes to shipping and delivery policies
- Sponsorship of a charity
- Support of trending news
- Major sales – must be above industry standards
- Receiving an award
- Support of a social movement campaign
- Customer success stories (human interest story)
Note, having a story to tell around one of these topics doesn’t guarantee media coverage, but it’s a good place to start.
Before You Pitch Management on Press Releases
Before you go to management, be fully prepared with all the information they will want to know. Have your “elevator” pitch ready and be confident.
- Identify your goal.
- Figure out what you’re trying to accomplish for the business.
- Decide where you want to target press coverage (national, regional, state, or an exact city).
“Put yourself in your recipient’s shoes, and figure out what’s in it for them.” — Sujan Patel.
In this case, the recipient would be your boss, management or business owner.
Understanding The Credibility Factor of a Press Release
You may get some pushback on going forward with a press release because people like to think this method of getting company news out is outdated. They need to be reminded about the credibility factor of press releases versus a blog post on the company site.
Remind them, even if your management didn’t get one piece of “official” media coverage from it, it’s content that will be live on the web forever. If it’s optimized correctly, the business still has a chance of getting found online by readers. In essence, press releases work 24/7/365; unlike a news story that dies with the end of a newscast or the tossing out of a magazine.
Your One Chance, the Perfect Pitch
You may only get one chance to pitch a press release to your management. Be prepared!
Here is the perfect pitch recipe:
- An angle that piques the business’s ROI.
- An attention-grabbing subject line.
- A short, crisply written out email or one-sheet that instantly gives them the value points of the suggested press release.
Did you win the press release challenge?
Congrats! We’re glad to hear you were able to the “okay” from management to go forward with your publicity efforts. Now it’s time to write the perfect press release. Luckily, in ‘Part 2’, we’ll take you step-by-step through the press release writing process.
If this seems time consuming, it is. That’s why most businesses hire an outside agency who are well versed in publicity services to deliver not only the best pitch but the best press release and step three — the best media outreach and results.
Contact V Digital Services for Professional Help
If you’d like to speak with a professional publicity expert, contact V Digital Services for a consultation and see what we can do for your business’ success with publicity.