How to Get Your Business into the Media
Getting your crafts business noticed by the media – for the right reasons! – can bring with it extra PR and promotion opportunities. But how can you make the right impression and get your business into the media limelight?
The media is a powerful tool for information sharing, promotion and marketing and, if used positively, it can help get your business name and nature into the knowledge of readers, listeners or viewers. Media outlets are always on the lookout for feature stories, articles and news to feature in print or broadcast mediums, and that’s where the main opportunities for business comes in.
If you’re organised and efficient and are already producing press releases when you have special events or offers, or are regularly advertising at a local or national level, then the chances are that you’ll get noticed by relevant publications. For example, crafts publications are always on the lookout for new products or stores (especially if they’re online) to mention in product write-ups and like to include details of accessible stockists.
At a local level, newspapers and magazines are always looking for businesses with a story to tell – perhaps you’re a new company, innovative, selling quirky handmade products or doing something unusual. The more eye-catching and original you are, the better. Likewise, radio stations local news channels also like to feature things going on at ground level, so if you’re having a big event or launching a new product range with a bit of pomp and fanfare, you may be able to get your local radio or TV station to come along and film it.
Contacting the MediaIt’s no use contacting media outlets and saying, "I want my crafts business featured in the media". That will get you nowhere.
The best way of grabbing their attention is to give them a specific focus. Being able to send in a press release you’ve written or had produced is a fantastic way of initially approaching a newspaper, magazine, radio or TV company, as it gives the impression that you’re media aware and are clued up on what you’re doing.
The press release should have a clear focus – e.g. be concerned with the launch of your business, a particular new product range you’ve launched or have details about any special events you’re running. Make sure all the key information and contact details are included on the release before sending it in.
Sometimes local papers will use the press release pretty much as is, printing it in the paper without contacting you. On other occasions, they may get in contact with you to ask for further details or a request to interview you. If your goal is to get your crafts business mentioned in the media, then don’t say no to a media interview, however busy you are.
You may be interviewed for extra quotes to go with a news article, or perhaps for a separate interview piece or feature for the publication. Either way, be friendly, helpful and cooperative throughout, as it’s your chance to mention what you’re doing and give your business some much-needed PR.
Becoming an ExpertTo expand your media portfolio further, you might consider trying to get yourself known either locally or nationally as an expert. In this case, it would most likely be as either an expert crafter, craft spokesperson or craft business owner.
Again, you could use the press release format to let relevant media organisations know that you’re willing to speak on certain craft related topics and would be happy for them to get in contact anytime. There are also various directories online typically used by the media where members of the public can gain free listings as an expert and provide contact details for journalists who want to get in contact.
Do be aware that often journalists have tight deadlines and will contact you out-of-the-blue – potentially at times when you’re already snowed under with work – and be keen for you to share your views and insight. If you’d like to be used as an expert regularly, then do try and fulfil these requests as much as you can and be helpful.