More than ever, I’m seeing “traditional” ways of getting media coverage, such as sending press releases, meeting with less and less success. Authors must be savvy about current trends in book promotion using more creative methods.
Following are some proven strategies I use that can help you gain more media attention.
1. Create a Media Page – If you don’t yet have a media page on your website, go add one now! This demonstrates that you are an experienced authority in your field. Your page should include the following:
- A list of topics that you are able to discuss. (e.g., Stephanie Chandler is available as a source for interviews on internet marketing, book publishing, social media, etc…)
- One or more professional, high resolution photos of you.
- Short and long bios that media pros can quickly copy.
- Quick facts about you that would be of interest to a reporter.
- Your contact information, including a cell phone number and email address. Make it easy for them to reach you since most don’t have time to waste!
- Past media coverage, including a list of media outlets. If you don’t yet have these yet, just skip this one and add them as you get them.
2. Promote Media Logos – If you’ve already had some success with media coverage, compile a file with the logos of media outlets where you have appeared. Even if the list isn’t long, start promoting past appearances on your home page or the sidebar on your site. Media pros like to work with experienced sources so your past experiences can help you gain additional opportunities, plus this experience can impress potential clients.
3. Go Local – One of the easiest ways to get media coverage is in your own backyard. Your local newspapers, business journals, magazines, and news programs all need sources for stories, and they want those sources to be local authorities. Pitch news-worthy ideas to your local media outlets and soon you could become a go-to source for interviews. And by the way, local media coverage can lead to national opportunities through syndication or from other outlets paying attention to local news.
4. Blog Often – That’s right, if you blog more often it can lead to media coverage. Reporters, writers, editors, and producers often turn to Google to find sources. Demonstrate your authority in your field by blogging about topics in your industry—along with topics with current news value. Years ago when the recession was just starting, I wrote about it a LOT. I was passionate about how I was going to continue growing my business through the recession (which I did!). As a result, I received a lot of media coverage from reporters who found my blog at BusinessInfoGuide.com.
5. Use Twitter – Search Twitter to find reporters, producers, and freelancers who cover your industry and follow all of them. You might be surprised by who follows you back! While you’re at it, make sure you are sharing plenty of compelling content on Twitter. Reporters are definitely searching for sources here.
6. Piggyback on Stories – Follow articles in your favorite publications and look for reasons to reach out to reporters. For example, if you’re a financial planner specializing in services for divorced women, and you come across an article in a women’s magazine about the challenges of divorce, find an email address for the writer of the article and send her a message. Let her know that you are an authority on divorce for women and list a few key points she could use in a follow-up piece. Even if it doesn’t turn into an immediate opportunity, that writer may find another reason to interview you down the road. Most journalists maintain a list of potential interview sources.
7. Write for a Major Blog – Gaining blogger status on a major media site can lead to other opportunities. Not only will it look great in your bio, your posts will be read by a bigger audience, and media pros pay attention to blogs too. Pick your favorite major media site and locate contact information for the blog editor (contact information is usually found somewhere on the site and if you have to get creative, you can usually hunt people down via LinkedIn or one of the other social networks). Sometimes all you have to do is ask!
8. Write a Niche Book – Amazon is another place where reporters look for sources to interview because authors are authorities. Stand out from the others by writing a book on a niche topic in your industry. Being an author is also great leverage when reaching out to reporters, making you a credible source and an instant expert in your subject matter.
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