5 TIPS FOR STARTUPS TO BOOTSTRAP PR EFFORTS
Executing a PR campaign is time intensive and requires finesse and knowledge of the lay of the land. That’s why most PR firms charge top dollar and don’t guarantee results. As a start up, you certainly can’t afford a biggie PR firm, but hey, here’s the good news. There is a DIY version of a PR blast we can recommend for you. Here are 5 tips that can help you bootstrap your PR efforts.
MIRROR, MIRROR ON THE WALL
This is the first step. Look honestly and deeply at the story you want to sell and ask yourself if you as a reader will be interested to read it. WIIFU… What’s in it for you? Does it engage you and make you curious enough to want to know more? If yes, you seem to have got it right. If not, the journo is certainly not going to buy it. Go back to the drawing board. Think about how you can bring out the message in your story strongly enough to capture your audiences’ interest. The mirror test is sure-shot way of sharpening your message.
GET OUT YOUR ROLODEX
That’s right. Make a list of all the key editorial contacts, Journalists and bloggers who write about your industry. The best way to do this is to scan all your target publications/blogs and mark out the names of the reporters who you would like to approach. Make your online rolodex of these contacts replete with their emails, Linkedin profiles, Twitter handles and Facebook profiles and get to know them. Form a picture of them or a social profile. Understand what makes them tick.
MAKE THE PERFECT PITCH
Now that you know who you want to approach to tell your story, your next step is to sell your story to them. You do this by writing a great pitch letter. An ideal pitch letter should have a catchy subject line- one that gives the news out as a compelling one liner. In the body of the mail, introduce yourself and express your interest in sharing a potential story idea that will add value to the readers of their publication. If you had done your research on this journalist and her publication right, you would be able to put your news in context with what the publication and this journalist is already writing about.
DO YOUR FOLLOW UPS AND HELP THEM CRAFT A UNIQUE STORY
Wait for a reply to your email for a couple of days before you call to follow up with the journalist. Once you know she is interested, make sure you give her a great story, something new that she can report about to her readers. Make her look good in her job by giving her as much information as possible and a great new angle to make her article engaging.
WATCH OUT FOR THE NEWS
Read your story in the news. Yeah, if you got all of these steps right, there’s a great big chance that your story will be told. If not go back to Step 1 and face the mirror.