A guide to the latest trends, issues and insights affecting your fast-changing world.
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For entrepreneur Brent Kraus, fashion is a family affair. See his surprising story now.Watch video
Author: Madie Hodges
Have you ever watched the news and saw a business in your town being featured right in front of you? You might have questioned or fantasized that maybe one day that could be you, too. Well, let’s make that dream a reality.
Receiving news coverage can be an easy process if you know what to pitch to the local media. Spread the word about your business’s events, landmarks, and projects by communicating efficiently with your news outlets.
Local papers and news stations happily feature small businesses all the time. For you, it is an inexpensive marketing tool, and for the news, it’s another great piece to talk about. Finding newsworthy topics about your company can really help boost your sales and brand recognition simply because journalists are an objective source of information.
You can also use social media to your advantage. It is a great way to spread the news about your business because it reaches people quickly and because it gives your followers the opportunity to share your news with their friends. Your news could easily start trending on Twitter or Facebook if you promote it correctly and push the right stories. So what makes your business newsworthy?
Human Interest Pieces
Do you have a quirky, loyal customer? Is the story behind you starting your own business interesting? Adding a personal touch to the story behind your business is a great way to garner interest. Human Interest stories are more relatable and they put a face to your business, which makes you seem more real and approachable.
Community outreach stories usually get picked up because once again they garner interest from your local community. Giving back through volunteer work and charity organizations will spark a lot of interest in your community because it gives you the chance to explain why these organizations need help and what you are personally doing to help your community. Kabbage demonstrates its commitment to charity by posting pictures of its community outreach products on social media sites and promoting its favorite organizations on the Kabbage Kares section of Kabbage’s website.
Does someone famous or important in your community frequent your business? If so, this is a great way to get some free publicity. The Santa Barbara based ice cream company McConnell’s Fine Ice Creams boasts about its famous clientele using pictures on their walls. It definitely sparked the interest of local newspapers, and when Oprah decided to make a visit to the ice cream shop, the media heavily covered it. Getting these endorsements isn’t too difficult if you reach out to local celebrities or TV shows.
Do you have a story that is going with a local, political, social, or economic trend? Those stories are the most likely to get picked up. Not only are they timely because they are tied to a popular current event but they are also newsworthy because they show a change or development in a particular direction.
Trending topics are especially newsworthy because it means a lot of people are talking about it on the Internet. For your business, a story would be considered a trend if other businesses in your industry are also doing something similar to you. For instance, shoe and clothing brands like Toms Shoes and Sevenly donate a percentage of their profit to charity.
Is your business doing something significant in your community that is different from everything else? Have you started a program for underprivileged youth? Are you donating a portion of your profits to a nonprofit or working with the activist groups to get a law in your area changed?
Take Dr. Bronner’s Magic Soaps for example. The company changed its label for the last two months to urge people in Washington State to vote “Yes” on a bill that would make food distribution companies label their products with GMOs. That story is considered newsworthy because GMOs are a trending social topic, and Dr. Bronner’s is taking active steps to make a change for the better in its community.
So if you are looking for some positive, free press, find an interesting angle and pitch your story to your local news stations and papers. Make sure your story is built for your audience and that is has news value. Otherwise, your story might never make it to publication.