How to get them to cover your Event
· Press Release: This is a great idea! But it is never enough.
– Make sure your press release has a date, time, and location of the event!
· Call!! And make sure you speak to a reporter.
– Who to talk to: If you’re calling print press, ask to speak to the National Desk, then a reporter who might cover your event. For radio and TV, you want to speak to the assignment editor.
– Leaving a message is a start. But you have to get a reporter to talk to you. Keep calling, until you get to talk to someone to tell them about your event.
– Ask them if they will come. This seems obvious, but it’s very important. They’re much more likely to come if they’re asked.
· Editors: Often, the stories that are covered are decided by the EDITOR.
– If you know anything about the editor or his/her style, mention that when you speak to the reporter.
· Timing: It’s important to think about when to call.
– Don’t call print reporters after 3pm. They are usually busy writing their stories for the next day (on deadline).
– Don’t call radio stations during “drive time” (7-9am, 4-6pm).
– Don’t call TV reporters during newscasts (6-7am, 5-7pm).
– The best time to call in the days before the event is 10am.
– On the morning of the event, call early (no later than 8:30am). At 8:30 or 9am, most reporters go into an assignment meeting, where they are told what to cover for the day, and you want to be fresh on their mind.
– Deadlines! Remember, weekly papers have different deadlines for publishing. You have to give them more notice to cover events.
· Important Details:
– When sending emails, don’t attach your press release. Paste the text into the email.
– The press contact in your group should be a person who can answer the phone the entire time during the event. This person shouldn’t have another role, so he/she can focus on talking to press.
– After the event, make more calls. Tell reporters about the event, offer to send them photos, tell them who’s already covering it. Just keep calling! The more you call, the more coverage you will get.