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Small Bucks For BIG Returns?


Okay, you want to send out a news release announcing your special new low prices for next weekend. Fuggeddabowedit! Well, what about Margee, our receptionist walking in tomorrow’s March Against Secondhand Smoke? Brrrrraaaaaaaaat!

     Stop wasting your time and have mercy on the poor editors you’re targeting.

     News Releases must –first and foremost– be NEWSWORTHY!

     That’s not to suggest a lack of newsworthiness in your business or professional practice. I like to think there is ALWAYS something newsworthy going on, that the challenge is how to position that activity or event to have a perceived value to media readers/viewers/listeners from the editor’s perspective.

     When you make the editor’s job easy, by turning in a professionally-written release that’s grammatically and factually correct, that answers the questions: Who? What? When? Where? Why? and How? (and preferably in synopsis form all in the first paragraph), odds are good your release gets considered.

     When, added to that, what you provide also reads and flows easily, has proper contact information provided at the end for checkup questions, and is politely and respectfully presented asking for coverage consideration, odds are good your release gets printed (especially when you follow-up by phone and offer additional input).

     Can it be emailed. Yes, but not as an attachment, particularly if it’s your first contact with that editor. And the subject line should say “NEWS RELEASE: New Product Announcement from the ABC Body Piercing Company” or whatever. Keep it simple and specific and separate it from the junkmail.

     Remember that you are asking the newspaper, magazine, TV, radio or Internet media you contact to give up space or time that they may be able to sell to advertisers, and give up ink and paper or time or space that they are somewhere paying for, to give you free attention.

     What you give them had better be worth it! (Back to “Newsworthy”!) Media people use your input at their discretion. They can slightly alter or completely re-write what you send them, or they can simply toss it in the trash. That’s the trade off.

     If you want and feel you have information that others would consider newsworthy, find a professional publicist or public relations (PR) person to write it up and distribute it and lobby for coverage on your behalf. It’s well worth the price, especially compared to paid advertising which research proves gets only 1/10 the credibility of a news release-generated story.

     Most PR professionals have been news editors or reporters and understand the dynamics from that side of the deadline-pressured desk. They know how to gear the release, what provocative slant to take, and how to influence the recipients in a positive way.

     So, if having the public (or your industry or profession in the case of trade and professional journals) believe you and your product or service claims, a news release story will always be accepted quicker and easier than the same words appearing in a paid advertisement or commercial. 

     In today’s budget-tight economy, many businesses are turning to PR for less-expensive, more effective ways to get their messages out. Once the economy is back on track, I believe you will see many of these companies stay with PR programs. Why spend big bucks for small returns when you can spend small bucks for big returns?    

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      . . . Send your input anytime: (”Businessworks” in the subject line) or comment below. Thanks for visiting. Good night and God bless you! halalpiar  # # # 

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