Five ways small business can get more media


There aren’t any real guarantees with media, aside from the fact the competition to be a go-to expert is always going to be strong. Think about all the people in your industry who have been around as long as you. Each of them will have an opinion and position on the issue of the day in your industry that they are willing to share. The field is broad, so how can you carve out a space and be on media speed dials?

First step is to get to the point of your pitch with a strong subject line. Think about the media you’re pitching to, and what will be the most interesting part of your pitch – make that the subject line in seven words or less to get attention. The Media Board is a classic example of content produced for the media by media professionals.

Next, make sure you are consuming the media you want to appear in. Know what that radio program, publication or tv show features or talks about, what kinds of experts appear on the program regularly, know whether they look for case studies that reflect their audience and then use this intel to craft a pitch that is tailored to and impossible for a producer or editor to ignore.

Third, reach out to let the media know you have a particular expertise and that you are available for comment and content on tap. Young producers and journalists are looking to build up their connections and sources. A proactive approach will win you connections, relationships and future opportunities. A simple reach out via email to detail your expertise and the type of stories you can comment on really does work.

Next, make sure you have your bio and headshot ready to send at a moment’s notice. A professional headshot is critical for media and it can’t be a selfie or a holiday pic. When you write an op-ed and get it in the newspaper the first thing the editor of that masthead asks for is a profile picture to go with the piece – in fact, you really should attach the image to your original pitch. Professional photos make a big difference and any branding expert will tell you it’s critical for both your business and personal profile.

The last hack to getting more media is to think like the media. Ask yourself these questions: Would anyone else find this interesting? Would an audience react or engage with this content? Is it original? Is it adding value to the conversation? Too often we produce content that is important to us and not to the targeted audience. Media has an obligation to serve their audience and if you take on this approach with your content you will be far more successful in getting a breakthrough.

These are all helpful hints to becoming a ‘media asset’ and you can employ them yourself. You can also work with experts in the communications space to bounce ideas off and make sure that you are putting out content that has a better chance of getting through the media gatekeepers.