Today I have Julie Sherwood’s (of Get In The Press) second guest post on PR. In this article she looks at the often overlooked subject of finding an angle for your press release.
(Don’t forget to take a look at her first post, So what is PR… exactly?)
Over to you, Julie!
The trick with PR is to find a news-worthy hook for your press release. Easy if you have something obvious to shout about; a businesses award you’ve won, a major new contract or a new product line. But there are plenty of other ways you can find an angle too.
You can get creative by linking in subjects relating to your business. This can lead to two things: it opens up potential features you could be featured in AND it positions you as an expert in your field. Don’t be afraid to pitch a feature or article idea to a journalist – just be sure you can back up your idea with stats, facts or expert opinion.
Another option is to keep up with trends in the news, and get in contact with the journalist offering additional statistics, a different view or findings. If an announcement has been made about new health findings, can you offer a supportive view or a case study for a feature.
You can predict what will appear in the papers and magazines too, and help yourself gain some free media exposure. For example, the recent TV Series Call The Midwife lead to several features and interviews with birthing assistants and Midwives of today – all giving their expert views on how this career had changed over the years. This was an excellent chance for people to plug their business.
The press need you. They are always on the hunt for new sources of information, new statistics and product news.
More recently, the Britain’s Got Talent winner Pudsey and Ashleigh, has lead to a number of media requests for dog owners and dog trainers to take part in features. So if you have good contacts, you can almost pre-empt the news and pitch features relating to news in the press. A good PR Manager will also subscribe to a media alerts service so they will be able to put you forward for media opportunities as soon as they arise.
Here are my tips for finding PR angles in your business:
Remember my golden rule – the press need you. They are always on the hunt for new sources of information, new statistics and product news.
Have the right contacts – make sure you look beyond the editor. There will be someone relevant to your business – perhaps a lifestyle editor, arts editor, cookery editor, books editor or shopping editor. Try Parenting Magazine Contacts for parenting and women’s lifestyle press.
Grab a large sheet of paper (and a glass of wine, optional) and start a spidergram of your business and potential angles you could be involved in.
Case study example: PR angles for a children’s swimwear retailer, some angles relating to this may include:
- When is the right age to take your baby swimming.
- Precautions and safety in the water for your baby.
- Protective beachwear for young children – how the sun can damage delicate skins.
All the above three options give the opportunity for you to plug your business and they also position yourself to be an expert. Journalists like to know that you can be relied upon for comment or interview and using a variety of relevant angles increases your chances of being featured. But remember to keep it relevant. Specialise in your subject area.