How Patience Pays Off When Trying To Grab The Media’s Attention

How Patience Pays Off When Trying To Grab The Media’s Attention

Sometimes media opportunities emerge quickly after you pitch journalists with a great story idea. Often, though – especially with the print media – those opportunities take time and the fruits of your labor may not reveal themselves until days, weeks or even months after you send out your pitch. We experienced a remarkable example of one of those “takes-time moments” recently when a reporter for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reached out to us with a surprising request. She wanted to speak with one of our clients for an article we wrote for her campaign that examined how to talk to parents who are grieving the loss of a child. The journalist remembered receiving our pitch a year ago, about what to say to grieving parents. So she searched her email and, sure enough, there it was, ready to lead her back to us and our client. Now, it just so happens that this particular client’s contract with us ended about eight months ago. Even so, we didn’t hesitate to arrange the interview. We were happy that the interview went so well for our client as she was featured prominently in the article that appeared in the Journal-Constitution. But it didn’t end there! Over the next several days other publications picked up the article. A week later that was still happening, with the Boston Herald joining those that had published the piece. It was a big win all around, all because of a year-old pitch! This particular incident brings to mind a couple of things worth remembering when you’re out there trying to grab the media’s interest and worrying that all...
What The Oscars Can Teach Us About Rebounding From A Mistake

What The Oscars Can Teach Us About Rebounding From A Mistake

A year ago the people in charge of the Academy Awards flubbed it – badly. As nearly everyone knows, the cringe-worthy moment came when someone handed presenters Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway the wrong envelope, causing them to announce La La Land as the Best Picture winner, when the Oscar actually belonged to Moonlight. Oh, my! It was quite an embarrassing – and humbling – moment for everyone involved. Add the fact that nearly 33 million people were watching and you had a broadcast gaffe of gargantuan dimensions. Had most of us been in that situation, we would have wanted to slink away, never to be seen again! But the folks behind the Academy Awards didn’t slink away. Quite the contrary! At this year’s Oscars, they dealt with the PR debacle head on, owning up to what happened while still giving the audience what it always tunes in for – fabulous gowns and heartfelt acceptance speeches, with a little music and comedy mixed in. Hopefully, in your efforts to promote your brand, you’ve never experienced a media misadventure that’s anywhere near the equivalent of last year’s Oscars. But many of us who have appeared on TV, been interviewed on radio or talked with a newspaper reporter certainly have had a few moments we would like to get back. Maybe you were asked a tough question you didn’t expect and stammered out an inadequate response. Perhaps you were unprepared for the detailed questions the interviewer posed, making you seem less authoritative on the subject than you really are. Or maybe nerves got the better of you and you drew a...
2018 Is Your Time To Shine

2018 Is Your Time To Shine

The start of a New Year is always a great time to focus on creating a “new you” – or at least an improved version of the old you. Sometimes we do that through resolutions about dieting and exercise that, sadly, we don’t always keep. Sometimes we enter January vowing that in the next 12 months we will travel more, read more or spend more time with the family. As you look ahead to all the possibilities that a New Year brings, let me suggest that if you’ve been letting your personal brand languish, 2018 can be your time to shine! It can be the year you rise from obscurity to fame – or at least to recognition as a voice of authority and go-to expert in your field. You just need to be willing and determined to make it happen! You can bet that if you don’t, someone else – possibly a direct competitor – is going to step into the limelight that you neglected. They will be the ones polishing up their personal brands and, as a result, speaking with journalists, chatting with radio and TV show hosts, and linking to their media success stories on their websites. Several years ago when I wrote my book Celebritize Yourself, personal branding hadn’t become quite as widespread as it is today. Certainly, some people – Zig Ziglar, Suze Orman and Bob Greene, just to name a few – had become extraordinarily successful at it, but at that time there weren’t always as many ways for people to promote themselves as there are now. Most of the social media platforms...
Make Sure The Year Ends With A Marketing Bang – Not A Whimper

Make Sure The Year Ends With A Marketing Bang – Not A Whimper

With so many years of experience behind us – not to mention the availability of calendars – you would think we would be better prepared for what’s about to come. Yet, year after year, many of us act astonished and caught unaware by this annual, easily predictable time of year that still somehow manages to sneak up on us. Once again, it’s the last quarter! Suddenly, the holidays are here! And before we know it, 2018 will have arrived and just like in the past we’ll be wondering where those final months of the year went and whether we made the most of them when we had the chance. And too often we will shake our heads as we realize that we could have accomplished so much more with the right planning. If only… So before 2017 really starts winding down – and disappears for good – let me suggest a few things you can do with your year-end PR efforts that will help you feel that you did indeed make the most of the moment: First, put your marketing hat on. Think about the media outlets you can get your message in front of right now and in the coming weeks. Don’t limit yourself! Think print, both traditional and online. Think radio and TV. Think social media. Also, brainstorm on your own or with others to come up with ways you might be able to tie your message to the holidays, to year-end planning or to resolutions for the New Year. A financial professional, for example, could pitch something like: “4 Resolutions That Will Help You Become Financially...
Creativity And Persistence Can Separate You From The Pack In The Publicity Game

Creativity And Persistence Can Separate You From The Pack In The Publicity Game

Grabbing the media’s attention isn’t always easy. Each day, reporters, editors, TV producers and radio show hosts scroll through a never-ending barrage of email messages, many of which they no doubt delete without even bothering to read. Let’s face it, they couldn’t write about or report on all those topics even if they wanted to! Time just doesn’t allow it. With competition for the media’s attention so fierce, how do you separate yourself from the pack and land an interview that will help build your credibility as a go-to expert in your field? I’d love to be able to reveal to you a super-secret strategy that will work every time, all the time! Sadly, that’s not the case. Sometimes you just have to get inventive, allowing those creative juices to flow as you brainstorm alone or with others about pitches that might resonate with a show host or article angles that will intrigue an editor. That’s what we do each day at EMSI. Sometimes those pitches and angles come easily – and we’re excited as we put them into action! Sometimes they don’t percolate so quickly – and in those cases we are even more excited when the right approach finally comes to us! There’s nothing like that PR eureka moment! But while no strategy is absolutely foolproof, there are some approaches you can take that definitely will increase your odds of success. They include: Follow the news. This is something we do every day on behalf of our clients. You increase your chances of getting the media’s attention if your pitch aligns with something people in the news...
Timing is Everything When Big News Happens

Timing is Everything When Big News Happens

An otherwise quiet Friday in our office quickly ratcheted up to high-alert level this past week when a major news story broke and journalists from far and wide pounded on our doors – or at least our email inboxes! Just like that, our print-campaign team was extraordinarily busy – and extraordinarily thrilled! We happened to have the right client for the right moment – and soon he was just as busy as we were, fielding media questions with professional aplomb. You probably heard about the event that launched the frenzy. It was the announcement that Amazon was buying Whole Foods, a business transaction that raised this intriguing question: How would this affect the brands of both companies, as well as the brands of their competitors? Our client, who soon became the media’s best buddy for the day, happens to be an international branding expert. Our team immediately understood that we could tie him to this major breaking news event in an impactful way. We crafted a quick pitch and sent it right off to our contacts at major publications. The response was downright explosive! Within an hour we heard from journalists at major publications like CNBC, USA Today, NBCnews.com, the Houston Chronicle, and others all vying to interview our client. We jumped on the rapidly arriving requests and arranged interview after interview after interview. Within the hour we began seeing the articles these news sites posted. And shortly after we got notice that over 60 other publications ran the USA Today story. Even LinkedIn got in the act. If you’re one of those people puzzled about the value of...