‘Musts’ before a media list

I’ve decided to give this blog more of a focus; strictly public relations, marketing communications and anything in between.

When I was looking to get into PR, I read many student blogs, and also blogs of those just starting their careers. I used these as resources to enrich my learning, better myself and all that…

In my next few posts I’m going to share learnings that i’ve picked up on the way; more specifically things that I thought I knew but were soon exposed by my arrogance naivety.

First up; that old chestnut; the media list. And by media list I’m collectively referring to traditional press lists and blogger outreach lists; because the creation principles are identical. Yep, you heard me.

Anyway, the list. You know what you want and you know where it has to go; so it’s just a matter of whipping open Gorkana or Media Atlas, finding the relevant outlets, collating them, exporting as a CSV and then tarting the sheet up to make it look pretty. Right?

Wrong.

You think you have the relevant publications and writers, but…

  • will your intended writer treat and develop the story with their specific expertise?
  • are you even aware of their previous experience?
  • have you read their previous pieces?
  • have they covered areas similar to your story?
  • what kind of content do they use frequently; video, images, podcasts?
  • do you know how they prefer to be approached, and when?
  • do you know what their personal interests are?
  • is there an opportunity for future collaboration?

Some of this might seem a little obvious and logical but it’s surprising how many ‘experts’ get it wrong.

The fact is, if you do your homework and get the targeting right; the research will inform your approach and the story will almost sell itself.

Notice the ‘almost’ caveat; now onto that sell…

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