Smashing the Myth of the Press Release
A musician spends years honing his craft. He writes world-class songs and performs them in a manner that moves his listeners to tears. He records a demo tape and sends it to record labels. He gets a contract and becomes rich, famous and adored.
The lesson: demo tapes are the secret of becoming a famous musician.
Wait, you say, the demo tape was just a tool, just his way of conveying his talent. It's his ability as a musician that got him the contract and made him famous.
You're right, of course. He could have become just as famous if a record executive saw him in person, or heard about him from a friend, or as a result of a variety of other events.
Which brings us to the press release.
Somehow, the press release has taken on a magical reputation as the alpha and omega of publicity. Wanna become rich? Send out a press release. Wanna become famous? Press release. Wanna get on the cover of Newsweek? Press release.
Publicity "gurus" are springing up all over the Internet touting the press release as the answer to all marketing ills. Just knock out a release, mass e-mail it to journalists, sit back and wait for Oprah to call.
It's a cruel joke.
Here's the reality: the press release is no more important to your potential of scoring free publicity than the demo tape was to our musician friend. If he had no talent, if his songs sounded like garbage, the best recorded demo tape in the world wouldn't get him signed. Ditto for the publicity seeker. If you don't have a story to tell, your press release is utterly worthless.
I'm not knocking the press release -- it's an important tool. But it's just that: a tool. It's not the first thing you need to think about when it comes time to seek publicity. In fact, it's one of the last. And it's not even absolutely necessary (I've gotten plenty of publicity with just a pitch letter, a quick e- mail or a phone call).
If you worship at the shrine of the press release, it's time to rearrange your priorities. Here, then, are the things that are MORE important than a press release in generating publicity:
1. A newsworthy story. This is the equivalent of our musician's talent. It's the very basis for your publicity efforts. Without it, your press release means nothing. To learn about how to develop a newsworthy story, take a look at http://publicityinsider.com/questions.asp and scroll down to "Is my company/website/life really newsworthy?"
2. Learning to think like an editor. Oh, what an edge you'll have in scoring publicity over all those press release worshippers once you learn how to get inside the head of an editor. Give an editor what he wants in the way he wants it and you'll do great. I've got an entire article on the subject at http://publicityinsider.com/freesecret.asp Go there now and absorb it all. Trust me, it will make a world of difference.
3. Relevance. Tie in with a news event, make yourself part of a trend, piggyback on a larger competitor's story, but, by all means, make your story part of a picture that's bigger than just your company. Stories that exist in a vacuum quickly run out of oxygen.
4. Persistence. Sending out a press release and waiting for results is lazy and ineffective. If you really believe in your story, and you believe that it's right for a particular media outlet, you need to fight to make it happen. Call or e-mail the editor to pitch your story BEFORE sending the release. If one editor says no, try somebody else. If they all say no, come back at them with a different story angle.
Getting publicity involves so much more than just sending out a press release. Treat it as seriously and with as much respect as our newly minted rock star treats his craft and you'll be well on your way to success.
Bill Stoller, the "Publicity Insider", has spent two decades as one of America's top publicists. Now, through his website, eZine and subscription newsletter, Free Publicity: The Newsletter for PR-Hungry Businesses http://www.PublicityInsider.com/freepub.asp he's sharing -- for the very first time -- his secrets of scoring big publicity. For free articles, killer publicity tips and much, much more, visit Bill's exclusive new site: http://www.PublicityInsider.com
Advertising by textad.biz
Go Ahead, click an ad, you know you want to.
10 Secrets to Get Your Press Release Noticed
It's difficult enough running the day-to-day aspects of a business, let alone trying to drum up new business as you go. But according to Shannon Cherry, APR, even if you have additional staff helping to get the word out about your products and services, location and prices, delivery and sales support, news releases can make your company grow faster.
PRs Big Bang Theory
Lots of theories out there about public relations.Everything from "publicity's the thing!," "the care and feeding of reputations and "sales support is primary" to "gain and hold public acceptance," and "issue management's the thing.
Publicity From Thin Air
In an ideal world, your business would be overflowing withnewsworthy stories, and the media would be waiting with batedbreath for your next press release, ready to give you front pagecoverage. In the real world, however, it's not always so easy to generatereal news.
Generating Publicity For Your Business: Knowing Your Media Market Is Critical
When starting a successful business venture or launching a new product, most entrepreneurs or business owners conduct some type of marketing research to determine the extent of their prospective customer base. And when getting the word out to that customer base, many entrepreneurs may turn to the media to help generate a buzz for them.
Media Training: Stop Talking, Already!
THE TWO MINUTES UNDERDOGEdward Everett was one of the most famous orators of his time. Standing before an audience of thousands in a Pennsylvania field on a cold winter's day in November 1863, he delivered one of the impassioned speeches that made him famous.
What People Believe Can Bring You Success
Just think about it.If I come to believe that you really didn't dump those chemicals in the river, I'll probably stop picketing your business.
Marketing-Minded Financial Planners, Focus on Main Points During an Interview
You never want to inundate a reporter with information, but you don't want to be branded a one-trick pony either. That's why I recommend coming up with three key points for every interview you do.
The wind of changes..
PR Essential to Your Success
Whether you are a business, non-profit or association manager, your success will depend, to a large degree, on how well you positively impact the behaviors of those outside audiences that most affect your operation.You need to create external stakeholder behavior change - the kind that leads directly to achieving your managerial objectives.
Can Your PR Game Plan be Salvaged?
If, as is often the case, you are preoccupied with comm- unications tactics instead of working a plan to actively pursue those outside audience behaviors that stop you from achieving your objectives, the answer is yes.Fortunately, it's no big deal making the switch to a public relations problem-solving sequence that works.
What You Dont Know About PR Can Hurt You
And hurt bad if you are a business, non-profit or association manager. Especially when you rely too heavily on tactics like special events, brochures and press releases to get your money's worth.
How to Create Quality PR Results
For many of us, the word quality is closely related to our expectations. When we receive the public relations results we planned for, we feel, understandably, that we have generated quality results.
Publicity Performance Not Enough?
Even after a nice piece in a national publication, or a stint on a popular talk show, do you still have a feeling that your public relations dollar could be better spent?As a business, non-profit or association manager, do questions like that linger in your mind?Because if they do, you may be coming down with a real case of "I want my PR money's worth!"If that's how you feel, I'd guess that you're probably doing very little that's positive about the behaviors of those important outside audiences of yours that most affect your operation.Which means you may be failing to create external stakeholder behavior change that leads directly to achieving your managerial objectives.
7 Tips to Get More Mileage Out of Your Online or Offline Publicity
You worked hard to get a story on your business in a popularwebsite or your local paper. Don't let your efforts ends there --here are seven tips to help you maximize your online and offlinepublicity: 1) Reprint, Reprint, Reprint! A favorable article on your company or products is marketing gold- it implies that the publication or website has given itsendorsement.
3 Reasons to Tap into the Power of Publicity
Publicity is obtaining editorial coverage or features for your business. Publicity is getting your business reported as news.
Managers and PR Genius
The real public relations geniuses might be managers. You know, managers who pursue their objectives by reaching, persuading and moving those outside audiences whose behavior most affect their organizations, to actions those managers desire.
Levines Laws For Pitching With Panache
Excerpted from "Selling Goodness- The Guerrilla PR Guide To Promoting Your Charity, Nonprofit Organization, Or Fund Raising Event"Whether you are making a pitch over the phone or in person, whether to a newspaper or magazine journalist or a reporter or producer in the electronic media, there are fundamental rules to follow. To some extent, they coincide with universal rules that apply to all human relations-courtesy, honesty, respect, integrity-but some of them are relatively unique to media relations, such as the advantage of having a topic that grabs by the collar and won't let go.
How To Get Zero Cost Publicity For Your Business Part 1
Would you like to expand the volume of your business? You can let thousands know about your service, your store, or your new product without spending a penny. Whether you want to make more sales or get an offer on television, you can broaden the scope of your clients by free publicity.
Pressure From the Top?
Yes, and that pressure often comes from a CEO who knows what a public relations investment SHOULD produce.And do public relations folks fear such pressure? Not those who've got the answers!For example, "we're spending your public relations investment in the most effective way - insuring that our most important external audiences perceive us accurately, understand what we do, and end up taking those actions we desire.
What Kind of PR Makes Sense?
For business, non-profit and association managers, is it publicity that delivers newspaper and talk show mentions backed up by colorful brochures and videos, combined with special events that attract a lot of people?Or could your business, non-profit or association PR dollar be better spent on public relations activity that creates behavior change among your key outside audiences that leads directly to achieving your managerial objectives? And does so by persuading your most important outside audiences to your way of thinking, then moves them to take actions that help your department, division or subsidiary succeed?What we're talking about is the kind of PR that lets you do something positive about the behaviors of those external stakeholders of yours that MOST affect your organization. Which means the right PR really CAN alter individual perception and lead to changed behaviors that help you win.
|home | site map|