Can’t Miss Tips for Powerful Earned Media

For any brand, earned media is a must for any profitable PR campaign. This is doubly true when you are a business with very stiff competition, in an industry with strict regulations, or if you are just starting out and trying to get a toehold in a crowded marketplace.But how can you gain effective earned media if you are the new guy on the block, or if you are trying to gain some traction in a crowded marketplace? The basic answer is to build relationships with key media figures and influencers that connect with your target demographic. And, sure, that sounds great, but how do you accomplish this?

Seek Specific Channels

One of the biggest rookie mistakes you can make is email blasting anyone and everyone with a media connection. Sure, that may get you some results, but your ultimate goal should be about building a relationship with key media figures and influencers, not just getting a single headline published or broadcast. To accomplish this, you need to be selective in who you seek to connect with. Go in with the understanding that most media figures are incessantly bombarded with content they have no interest in. This leads them to be quick on the delete button. That doesn’t mean they’re jaded, only that they only have so many hours in the day, and they can’t waste time reading stories they will never publish.

Find a publication or site that caters to your target market, and look for journalists or other media figures that tell stories about products or services like yours. Sure, that narrows your field of potential outlets, but it also concentrates your efforts on people who may actually be interested in what you have to offer them.

Be a Source Not a Nuisance

Remember what we said earlier about building a relationship. All relationships are built on trust. If a media figure knows they can trust you to bring quality, timely content, they will be much more receptive to your submissions.

This means you need to consider not only which stories you submit, but how you submit them and when you submit them. Media is a deadline-driven, news-cycle-curated business. Your best bet for getting powerful earned media is to be on point and right on time. The key here is to find a way to connect your story with something that will immediately catch the interest of the audience of the publication or media figure you are targeting.

If you have questions or you’re not sure what you chosen media outlet is looking for, the easy way to learn is to ask them. Read up on the kinds of stories the reporter in question typically publishes and, armed with this information, contact them and ask them the kind of story they’re looking for. Make educated suggestions, but be open to their input. Remember, they have spaces to fill, and this is your opportunity to become their trusted source.

Craft a Compelling Narrative

Finally, and this is the most important, you need to know how to tell a story well, tell it in a succinct, compelling way, and tell it accurately. Story is a craft, so this will take time and practice, but if you put in the work, you can reap the rewards. Skip this step, and you will likely end up in the trash with the other people who tried to take a shortcut to earned media.

Ronn Torossian

Ronn Torossian is the Founder and Chairman of 5WPR, one of the largest independently-owned PR firms in the United States. With over 25 years of experience crafting and executing powerful narratives, Torossian is one of America’s most prolific and well-respected Public Relations professionals. Since founding 5WPR in 2003, he has led the company’s growth, overseeing more than 275 professionals. With clients spanning corporate, technology, consumer and crisis, in addition to digital marketing and public affairs capabilities, 5WPR is regularly recognized as an industry leader and has been named “PR Agency of the Year” by the American Business Awards on multiple occasions. Throughout his career, Torossian has worked with some of the world’s most visible companies, brands and organizations. His strategic, resourceful approach has been recognized with numerous awards including being named the Stevie American Business Awards 2020 Entrepreneur of the Year, the American Business Awards PR Executive of the Year, twice over, an Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year semi-finalist, Metropolitan Magazine’s Most Influential New Yorker, a 2020 Top Crisis Communications Professional by Business Insider, and a recipient of Crain’s New York 2021 Most Notable in Marketing & PR. Torossian is known as one of the country’s foremost experts on crisis communications, and is called on to counsel blue chip companies, top business executives and entrepreneurs both in the United States and worldwide. Torossian has lectured on crisis PR at Harvard Business School, appears regularly on CNN & CNBC, is a contributing columnist for Forbes and the New York Observer, and has authored two editions of his book, “For Immediate Release: Shape Minds, Build Brands, and Deliver Results With Game-Changing Public Relations,” which is an industry best-seller. A NYC native, Torossian is a member of Young Presidents Organization (YPO), and active in numerous charities.

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