At Total BS Media, we approach PR with a very strategic approach. It’s more about being a sniper than a recreational shooter. It’s like Wahlberg in Shooter not Transformers. Stick to what works.
At Total BS we start with relationship building and storytelling that all work towards earned media. Earned media is the most trusted voice of your brand. Earned media differs from paid and original content because it comes from a trusted 3rd party, outside of your business. If done well, the article positions your brand as “news worthy” and can generate high-quality links back to your site. If you’ve read out 17 Myths of SEO blog posts, you’ll know that those are the only links that matter.
Focus on building relationships with smart individuals who have zero stake in your company. Earned media cannot be bought, which makes it far more trustworthy than an ad or the content on a company’s website. Not to say that your content and your website are not important, they are and must be stellar as well. But, when a customer or prospect starts looking for what other people are saying about your company, you want it to be available, positive, and credible.
Earned media is all about building lasting relationships with the press. These kinds of relationships take time and consistent, clear communication. Don’t be afraid to follow up multiple times. Whether it’s email, a phone call, a text or an in-person visit, follow up until you feel a little embarrassed, and then follow up one more time. Why is this okay? Because you are trying to make this person’s job and life easier by giving them interesting, relevant, funny, engaging and useful topics to write about. You want to help them add value to the lives of their readers.
Example: You are pitching to a writer who primarily covers technology and more specifically startups and their trials and tribulations. You are the Bozeman marketing and public relations agency that has been hired to pump them up. After working with the tech startup’s team, you formulate 2-3 angles that lead your pitch efforts. Examples could be stories about the founder who comes from another successful company, women who write the code for the products, or maybe they have recently won a prestigious award.
A pitch is a gateway to earned media. The goal of a reporter or writer is to add value to their audience’s lives. You must keep these goals top of mind when developing your pitches. A reporter will not write about something just because you think it is interesting. Do your research on the person that you are pitching to. What have they covered before that was interesting or relevant to what you would like them to cover? The same pitch will not work for every outlet either. You will want to develop several pitches when beginning your outreach and customize as needed.
Example: Now you are pitching to a writer who mostly covers woman in business. So maybe you have two women who started a successful marketing agency in Bozeman, with zero capital, word of mouth referrals, and a rock solid “we won’t fail attitude.”
The return on your earned media investment happens pretty fast. Since you don’t pay for the media directly and it’s more effective in driving new business, the legwork needed to build relationships and pitches is well worth your time.
Earned media, paid media, and original media all play an important role in your marketing strategy. Now is the time to analyze your strategy to include the right amount of each one.
Need some help with that analyzing?