It’s time to level the playing field. Rightly or wrongly, how well established or recognised your brand is affects everything. That journo is unlikely to open your pitch if he’s never heard of you but that email below it from a household name? Chances are he’ll give it a glance. The same goes for awards, meetings, pretty much all areas of business.
There are ways to elevate yourself and achieve the kind of coverage you’d expect from a “bigger brand” though. Ultimately it requires you to give more than you take.
Offer real value – not just to the reader but the editor or journalist too
You’ve already accepted you’ll need to work a bit harder to get noticed. The best way to do this is to get in the mindset of the editor or journalist you want coverage from. Yes, they’ll be thinking of their audience, but they’ll also appreciate something that gives them the edge over other magazines or newspapers
New research or data is a great way to offer them something they can’t get elsewhere. Running or commissioning your own survey, especially if it gets to the heart of a timely industry issue, is a great way to do this. You may even have your own company data that gives a real insight into a particular topic.
Freedom of Information requests are ideal too. They’re free and while you don’t “own” that data, the point is it won’t be readily available elsewhere.
Be careful to spell out your value too. Whilst it may seem obvious to you, taking the time to clearly explain why what you’re offering is of value to them and their publication, could be the difference between them using it or not. Don’t give them a reason to ignore you.
Seek quotes and insights from industry experts
Associating yourself with industry specialists, governing bodies, charities, or other well-established names not only gives your content more authority, it’s a more attractive proposition to an editor or journalist. (As to the point above, it also saves them time and legwork).
This could come in the form of a short quote or even a full interview. Even if you’re still establishing yourself in your industry, if your ideas are strong and you’ve done your research, many people are willing to take part. After all a short quote is manageable in their busy schedule, plus it’s publicity for them too.
Placing said name in your subject line is also a great way to make sure your hard work doesn’t go to waste. And if when you’re successful, don’t forget to share your coverage with those who’ve helped you out with quotes or interviews. They may choose to link to it or share it through their social channels which elevates you by association.
Think about taking it one step further by partnering a larger company in a different but related space on a joint project. You may be expected to do more of the running, but it’s likely you can also expect to benefit from a larger target press list.
This could be anything from joint branded social posts to a full research campaign but should be a topic you can both contribute authoritatively to.
Once people start to see the calibre of people you work with, the kind of company you keep, you’ll start to be seen as a bigger brand by association, opening up more doors for you in terms of PR.