Today, I had the good fortune of being on a Google hangout with some great start-up minds to discuss getting press. Here are four great takeaways to get your site press.
1. Tell a Compelling Story
Nothing is more important in getting press than having a compelling story. This doesn’t mean one story, an About Us, or a mission statement that makes your company interesting. This is a different story depending on the audience.
If you are pitching TechCrunch, your story is going to be very different from even another tech blog, like Mashable. It is going to be EXTREMELY different from a blog like Thrillist. The key is to write the article for the audience of the journalist you are pitching. A lot of times reporters will actually use what you write, or part of it. The easier you make their job, the better.
2. Form Strategic Partnerships
Another great way to get press and attention is to partner up with other companies that are commonly in the press. An ambitious example is to get a tech partnership with Google, or maybe your fashion company can now be seen on Nordstrom. These kind of names offer the same thing having a celebrity does—brand recognition. Journalists LOVE to write about recognizable names, so if you can align with them, it can really help. You also get the added benefit of grabbing the attention of your new partner’s audience.
3. Engage in Guest Blogging
Being an expert on another blog can help you reach other audiences and write in a way that attracts the attention of the audience you are trying to get in front of. If you have a fashion company, writing for a big fashion blog as a guest expert in your line can grab other audiences.
4. Keep It In-House
If you are just starting out, don’t go hire a big PR firm. Though they do have the Rolodex and connections, no one can pitch your company better than you. A lot of journalists love to hear directly from the source and not their publicist. While you are still trying to break into the press and start your “drum roll,” do it yourself or have someone close to you do it. You will have a much higher chance of actually getting seen because your passion will come through. You are also much more likely to really pursue press and push harder because you live with the direct benefits.
5. Be Unique
This is easier said than done, but telling a unique story with a good hook is always going to get noticed because it’s loud. Loud in the sense that it cuts through the noise of all the other people pitching the same company-centric story time and time again. It’s not about you!
When you pitch a story you should always have the audience in mind. Think: “Who cares and why?” If you can’t answer that honestly, find someone you trust to be honest with you and pitch them first.