3 Ways to Get PR Coverage: Print Media

One of the most effective advertising strategies -- both in terms of cost and in terms of credibility -- is getting some media coverage. This is, of course, mostly free (excluding your opportunity cost), but the challenge is: how do you get someone in the local (or regional, or national) media to do a feature on you? In these challenging economic times, it is true that print publications are struggling, but editors are usually still looking for local articles that don't require a lot of research. Since staff has decreased, many newspapers have confronted challenges in covering local happenings and end up taking a lot of national stories from sources like the Associated Press, hence decreasing their local relevance, so they might be grateful about a business story from their community that's presented to them.

Getting coverage in media can greatly improve your chances of breaking into new markets and being exposed to the business community. There might be translation needs you will probably not have anticipated, and it's a great way to increase demand. However, don't expect to have the phone ring off the hook the next day: sometimes PR is part of brand-building and is a long-term investment.

Here are three things you can do to jump-start your PR efforts in print media.
  1. Get featured in your alumni magazine, whether you live in that community or not. Most editors of these magazines are always looking for interesting stories on alumns. Even if your entry only makes it into the smaller "class notes" section, these magazines are usually read quite widely by the business elite. Being an alumna or alumnus of the particular university usually adds to your credibility, as many graudates enjoy doing business with fellow alumns.
  2. Contact your local business weekly. Editors' names are usually publically listed in the publications and/or their websites. Write a short note (e-mail is fine) about who you are, why it would be interesting to feature you, and give them some useable information about you. Write a press release about yourself to give editors more background.
  3. Write a letter to the editor. Sure, this sounds very old-fashioned, but if you have something interesting and insightful to say and your letter gets printed, a lot of eyes will see what you have written. Ideally, you'd comment on an issue related to your industry; about language, translation, interpretation. etc., in the news and explain your point of view from a languages professional.


Kevin Lossner on May 7, 2009 at 1:14 AM said...

In the spirit of your third point, you could also offer to write a guest editorial. One sees this sort of thing often enough in print media.

Judy Jenner and Dagmar Jenner on May 7, 2009 at 12:53 PM said...

@Kevin: excellent point! That is also a good way to get some coverage.

Veritas on August 5, 2010 at 3:00 AM said...

I am doing working experience at he moment with a language solutins company in Swansea - we ran a competition in our office and then wrote a press release about it which we sent to loads of newpapers - It turned out to be a very effective way of gaining media attention!

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