So, you wanna send a press release and it’s edited to perfection, there are some great quotes and the event is worth attending. However, the likelihood of it being picked up by journalists is rare.
For those of us just starting out, it’s difficult to build a relationship with the media/working in media relations. The good news is that I listened to four media relations professionals speak at a PRSSA Regional Conference and they dropped some knowledge. Hopefully, these tips help and you can also kill it in media relations!
1. Befriend the media
Public relations professionals work hand-in-hand with journalists. So, instead of only reaching out to them when we need something, we gotta be friends. Be kind and offer something in turn. Take them out to lunch to talk about things other than work. Oh wow, they watch Game of Thrones? Consider tagging them on a post about the final season. Offer an extra ticket to an event you know they would enjoy. Shoot them a happy birthday message. It is all about cultivating a trusting and genuine long-lasting relationship, so be a good friend. That can take you far.
2. See the bigger picture
In the world of PR, having a plan is critical but also know that nothing is definite. Crises happen: cars break down and our schedule can be thrown into chaos, someone says something they shouldn’t have, etc. It’s important to have Plan A but make sure to have a contingency plan. Think big and be capable of taking different avenues to meet the end goal.
3. Order some inner strength (in bulk)
People probably will yell at us. A lot. We also will get rejected multiple times, but let’s not take it personally! Brush it off, get even more creative with our pitches and keep it pushin’.
PR is not just about writing well; it’s about reading well too. We have to stay up to date on the news revolving around our specific company and what is happening in the world. Be cognizant of and sensitive to unexpected events and tragedies. Don’t forget to keep an eye on the happenings in Washington. By educating ourselves on what is going on in society, we become better communicators, ultimately making us more valuable.