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How to Get Press for Your Business

How to Get Press for Your Business

Getting a press placement for your business can translate into increased visibility, differentiate your firm from the competition, generate new business, and assist in recruiting.

As a public relations expert with 30+ years of experience - my public relations agency, The Boreland Group Inc., has gotten our clients in such leading outlets as The Wall Street Journal, Harvard Business Review, Fast Company, US News & World Report, the Associated Press, Bloomberg TV, and the Huffington Post - trust me when I say that getting press is not as simple as it looks. It takes time, effort, and a strategy. You will have to manage expectations; yes, you may get the interview, but that doesn't mean your quote will appear.

[Related: Rewiring the Brain to Bounce Back from Setbacks Faster and Easier]

What are some steps your company can take to get its "unfair share" of business-building press attention? Here are five tips that will start you on your way.

  • 1) Location, location, location.

    You may want to get a big, splashy placement in the The New York Times. But is your target audience more influenced by Crain's New York Business? Getting media where you want to be will have limited impact. It’s about getting press in the media outlets that will provide you and your business the highest rate of return.

    2) Do your homework.

    Take the time to research the reporters who cover your industry. One of the biggest complaints reporters have is getting pitches that have nothing to do with their areas of coverage. If you make this mistake, reporters most likely won’t redirect your pitch to the right person and you’ll lose out on the opportunity.

    3) Make friends.

    It’s worth your while to develop relationships with reporters. They’ll pay more attention to your pitches, and when they need someone to interview, you’ll be higher on the list to get contacted.

    Building a relationship is not hard to do. One way is to follow a reporter on Twitter. Tweet her articles, like her posts, and comment. An important note: You must be authentic in whatever action you take. Reporters aren’t stupid, and will see through false connections faster than an oncoming deadline.

    4) Keep it real.

    If you get asked a question during the interview for which you don’t have the answer, don’t panic and don’t wing it. Say you don’t have the information, and will get back to them with it ASAP. You can then pivot to what you can speak about and take back control of the conversation.

    5) Time is of the essence.

    Don’t keep reporters waiting. If they contact you for an interview, respond as quickly as possible. Reporters are on tight deadlines, and don’t have time to spare. If you keep them waiting, they’ll go to another source.

    Media relations is a tool that every company can use to its benefit. By following these tips, you’ll increase your chances of generating attention that can assist your business and maintain and grow its market share.

    [Related: How to Work With a Public Relations Firm]

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    Jennefer Witter is the CEO/Founder of The Boreland Group Inc., a public relations agency that focuses on corporate and executive visibility. She is the author of "The Little Book of Big PR: 100+ Quick Tips to Grow Your Small Business" (HarperCollins), which devotes an entire chapter to media relations. Witter is also an in-demand speaker, with appearances at venues such as The Pentagon, Vital Voices Global Ambassadors program, the 92nd St Y, and The Brookings Institution. You can follow her on Twitter at @JenneferTBG.

    Have more questions? Follow up with the expert herself.


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