Tag Archives: JOU4371

Alternatives to sending a press release

Many times I have felt that a full press release may not be needed in certain situations. Depending on the event or time issues, sometimes it is just easier to get your message across in other ways. With the way technology is advancing, the press release may sometimes even seem “old school” in today’s society.

Claire Celsi, Editor at Ragan’s PR Daily believes that list-building-services have created a generation of lazy PR professionals.

She says, that “arguably, the worst part about being a PR professional is facing that list, breaking it down, and digging in to pitch to those reporters. But the most important thing is not writing the press release and blasting it out. First, you have to back up and say:

What is my message, and who would appreciate hearing it?

“Challenge yourself to never send another standard press release again.”

Celsi says that the best alternatives to use instead of a press release are:

1. Pitch email. Put your pitch in the form of a story, with bullet points emphasizing the most important details you want the reporter to know.

  • Google the reporter’s name. After ensuring that she still writes for the news outlet, click on one of her recent articles. Make sure it is within the same genre as your pitch.
  • Write a one-paragraph personalized intro for every email you send. Show some interest in the reporter’s work.
  • The remaining portion of the email can be the same for every reporter. This is your brief opportunity to capture the reporter’s interest with your pitch. Make it short, and make it interesting.
  • Write a subject line that gets attention and describes your pitch.
2. Make a website posting (preferably a blog post). 
3. Send a tweet. 
4. Send a Facebook message. 
5. Pick up the phone. 
6. Offer to meet a reporter for coffee.
Personally, I like the idea of not sending a press release for everything. Human contact can go a long way, and having a reporter hear your voice can usually be more persuading than a letter. Social media’s purpose is to help you complete tasks with more ease and efficiency, so why not take advantage of it? You might actually impress someone with how you go about contacting them for a story.
Tagged ,

Public Relations and Research

Throughout my internship experiences, I have learned that research is always the first step before doing anything. You always need to have reasoning as to why you are doing what you’re doing, and facts and figures to work with. Your credibility is crucial in the business world, and without it no one will trust your judgement.

Why should PR firms use research?

This article states that there are generally two type of circumstances that strongly recommend marketing research.

1. Research the environment. For a PR firm to be successful, it is very important to understand the economic, political, legal, public opinion, social, cultural, technological, marketing, and financial components of your organization. This kind of research can take place before a pitch, or in conjunction with a major repositioning with an existing client.

In both cases, it helps the PR team make better decisions about major or subtle directions, and makes the PR firm look like it knows about the client’s business problems and its marketplace.

Your PR firm may be “talking the talk” about evaluating your clients’ and prospects’ business environment, but are you “walking the walk” by actually budgeting and conducting the necessary research?

2. Research for ink. The most successful PR firms are the ones that get the most out of media support and favorable exposure to their clients. A creative and effective way to capture the media’s attention and “get out the good news” is to feed the media with your message through public opinion polling.

Newspaper, radio, and television content editors are on constant prowl for targeted, incisive information that not only defines some of their subscribers, but is also interesting to a broader audience. What better win-win solution than a market survey that reveals the consumer or business sector’s opinion about what’s important to them about the products or services that your client just so happens to provide?

This article makes some great points. The only way to know what a target market wants is by asking them. Hearing their perspective on products might be totally different than your ideas, and going through with these studies will ensure your product’s effectiveness. Wouldn’t you want to gather as much information as possible so you won’t make a huge mistake and risk your job?

This post is a series of my thoughts, and a summarization of “Tips on Using Marketing Research for Public Relations,” by Gregory Kohs


Tagged ,