How to easily find media to pitch for coverage: Just ask!

By Christy A Laverty | Media Relations Consultant & Retired Journalist

I am all about working smarter, not harder in all areas of business, including media relations and PR. Creating a solid media list of media contacts is a key component in your PR toolbox. When it comes to finding media, particularly contacts to send a story pitch to there is a simple thing you could be doing to make your search easier. It is so simple that if you are not doing it now you will wonder why you aren’t! So here it goes. Are you ready?

ASK!

That’s it!

You just need to ask for media suggestions and recommendations. Look to the circle of people around you. ASK YOUR CURRENT CUSTOMERS AND CLIENTS what they watch, what they listen to, and what they read!

Simple right?

So here is the thing, the whole idea of getting press and media mentions is all about allowing you to promote who you are and what you do so you can bring in more customers and clients so you can bring in more revenue…so why not find out where your current customers and clients hang out. You want to find more people like the people who are currently working with you or buying from you and the best place to find those people is where your current customers are hanging out.

How do you find out what media your current customers and clients are consuming? Simply ask them.

ASK YOUR LIST

Send out a survey to your current email list of customers and ask them some simple questions about how they get their news and information. You want to know what news programs they watch, what morning shows they tune into, what radio talk shows they listen to, which blogs, magazines, newspapers, and websites they read, and what podcasts they listen to. You want to know what their media diet is. And this goes for mainstream news as well as niche news and information.

ASK YOUR FACEBOOK COMMUNITY

Post a poll on your Facebook page or in your Facebook group. Again, you want to get the details on how they are learning about industry news or world news. Ask them what industry websites they read, what magazines they subscribe to, or what newscasts they watch. You want to ask them what kind of information they are seeking out. Are they looking for industry news? Are they looking for health or business news? Are they looking for local news?

ASK OTHER ENTREPRENEURS

You should also consider chatting with your fellow entrepreneurs. It is great to find out where other business owners are going to for their news and information. It is great to have media mentions that focus on your niche and industry but it is also great to have media targets that focus on business. You want to make sure that your media list is diversified.

NOW WHAT?

Once you have some results from all those polls and surveys, take a good look at what your customers, clients, and friends have to say. Make a list of the media outlets, publications, websites, and podcasts offered up, and start doing your research. The idea is you should watch, listen, or read at least three shows, podcasts, issues, and/or articles, etc. For example, if your local morning show is on the list, be sure to watch at least three days of the show to get a real sense of the content that is shared. You want to get a sense of the tone, and the overall look and feel of the broadcast. You also want to learn about the kind of content the media outlet produces. This will help you decide if it is a media outlet you should be pitching. Will this take a bit of time? Sure, but in the long run, it will pay off. Doing your research to find the best media outlets to pitch will mean when it comes time to hit send on that email pitch you will know your pitch will be focused, targeted, and well-researched and that will mean you will be more likely to get a YES from that journalist.

The research phase is important so you can find the right media for you and your business. Not every media outlet is going to be the right fit. Not every media outlet is going to help you achieve every media goal you have.

Take the time to do the research, slim down the media list, and only keep the media outlets that are a good fit for you, your business, and the goals you are trying to achieve. You want to have some industry media, some local and regional media, and even some of those dreamy, top-tier media outlets on your list that you can send them your well-researched and focused media pitches.

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