The Right – And Wrong – Times To Take Advantage Of News To Promote Your Brand

The Right – And Wrong – Times To Take Advantage Of News To Promote Your Brand

One of the things I encourage people to do – and which we at EMSI regularly do on behalf of our clients – is to tie their message to what’s happening in the news or what’s trending on social media. It’s a great strategy for promoting your personal or business brand and under the right circumstances can work extremely well. For example, if you’re a CPA, you could offer tips on how to take advantage of a new change in the tax code. A doctor could discuss a just-released study about the most effective ways for treating migraines. Such situations can make you and your message invaluable to the media, opening doors for potentially longstanding relationships with reporters, editors and producers. But with that said, I also think it prudent to warn you that not all news situations are equal. There are times when it might be better to back off from what’s topical, such as during a national tragedy, a serious social issue or a particularly intense political season like the one we’ve just experienced. In fact, USA Today just published an article about how some people are taking a break from Facebook because their nerves are frayed and their tempers are short from all the political bickering. You want to be careful about getting caught up in the backlash from moments like that. With that said, let me offer a few points to keep in mind as you ponder when to pounce on the news – and when to lay low: Beware the ease of social media. One of the great things about using social media as...
Discounting The Value Of Digital Publications – Get With The Times

Discounting The Value Of Digital Publications – Get With The Times

Something I still hear from many clients is they’re excited about appearing in the traditional print version of a publication, but they’re not quite as thrilled about articles that appear online. Perhaps their reaction is only natural. Most of us grew up with traditional print playing a role in our lives. The local newspaper printed a photo of your Little League baseball team or your piano recital, and your mother proudly clipped it out and displayed it on the refrigerator or tucked it into a scrapbook. Traditional print can seem so much more substantial because you hold it in your hands. It has heft. It has texture. But it’s long past time to come into the 21st century and understand that, while appearing in the printed version of a newspaper or magazine is wonderful, it’s far more wonderful to appear online. Why? The majority of publications today reach significantly more people online than they do with the hard copy. For example, USA Today has a weekday circulation of 1.08 million, but online has 24 million unique visitors per month (VPM). New York Daily News has a circulation of 300,000 with 40 million VPM. And, Chicago Tribune’s circulation is 300,000 with 18.7 million VPM. That’s a lot of eyes that could come across an article, and this wouldn’t have been possible back in the days when traditional print was the only game in town. Beyond the incredible reach, let me give you just a few other reasons why online print coverage is more valuable than you may realize: It’s easier to share. Remember Mom and that Little League picture? She...
3 Ways To Make Journalists Happy and Promote Your Brand At The Same Time

3 Ways To Make Journalists Happy and Promote Your Brand At The Same Time

We always like to share good news with each other here at EMSI, so I was overjoyed to hear that another one of our clients – a financial professional – has been having a stellar print campaign. But his situation also got me to thinking. What’s been the key to his success and is there a lesson there for others trying to land print coverage? After all, he doesn’t have a large firm and he’s in the middle of the Heartland. There’s no particular reason, at least on the surface, for the media to latch onto him. Yet among the many print or online publications that we have arranged for him to be interviewed by are the New York Times, U.S. News & World Report, Investors Business Daily and Yahoo Finance. So I asked Toni Tantlinger, one of our print campaign managers, whether she had any ideas about why his campaign took off the way it did. Without any hesitation, Toni gave me three excellent reasons that others could do well to emulate: He makes himself available. Journalists are on deadlines and it’s common for them to need to interview someone today – not a week from Tuesday. If you can’t fit their interview request into your schedule, they’ll track down someone else who can. This client understands that and makes those media calls a priority. He’ll duck out of a meeting, reschedule an appointment or do whatever is necessary to meet the media’s needs. He’s willing to tread outside his comfort zone. Sometimes clients have a specific niche within their expertise and they want to stay there. They...
Content Is Still King With Print Media – Whether Traditional Or Online

Content Is Still King With Print Media – Whether Traditional Or Online

It’s hardly a secret that the print media has undergone a drastic evolution in recent years – and generally not for the better in the eyes of anyone who always enjoyed picking up the morning newspaper off the driveway to go with their cup of coffee. The latest gloomy news happened just this month when Gatehouse Media, which owns more than 120 newspapers across the country, announced it was offering buyouts to some employees and layoffs could follow. Such staff trimming has been a familiar scenario for nearly a decade as print publications dealt with a loss of advertising and print-circulation revenues, even as online readership numbers were growing by leaps and bounds. That’s created a bit of a paradox. Newspapers are eliminating writers and editors at a time when the internet is providing more readers than ever. So what does this mean to anyone who hopes to use print – both traditional and online – as a vehicle for promoting their personal or business brands? It creates an opportunity because these publications still need content even as they reduce the staff that always provided that content. That’s where you come in! If you are willing to write exclusive articles for some of these publications, or serve as an easy-to-reach source on your area of expertise, you might just generate interest that wouldn’t have happened even a few short years ago. Let me share with you a few of the guidelines we keep in mind when we submit articles on behalf of our clients: The content must be professional. Publications don’t accept just anything that comes across their email....
How To Squeeze The Most Out Of Every Print Appearance

How To Squeeze The Most Out Of Every Print Appearance

  When I chat with our clients about the print coverage we’ve been getting for them, I always ask what they’re doing to get the greatest mileage out of all that coverage. Way too frequently the answer is either “little” or “nothing,” outside of possibly posting a link to the article on their website. What they are missing is that traditional print and online publicity has value that goes well beyond the initial publication of an article or interview. In my experience, those who understand that value and take advantage of it are the ones who have the most success with their publicity efforts. Just as an example, let’s say Forbes decides to interview you. That’s impressive on its own merits, of course, but there are ways you can milk this opportunity for every drop of brand-building potential in it. How so? Well, this is where those social media platforms that you may not care for all that much become some of your greatest allies. Let’s look at five ways you can take that one interview and run with it: Let your followers know about the interview. You don’t even have to wait until the interview is published to start capitalizing on it. Go on Facebook, Twitter or other social media sites to let people know the interview happened. You can do this in a way that doesn’t sound (too much) like bragging, such as: “Had a great interview about retirement tips with a Forbes writer today. I’ll let you know when her article appears.” As simply as that, you’ve sent your followers a message that tells them you’re...
How To Harness The Power of Digital Print Coverage

How To Harness The Power of Digital Print Coverage

On occasion I still work with clients who need a little convincing – OK, in some instances a lot of convincing – about the strong PR value of articles that appear online, as opposed to appearing in traditional print. And just as I’m puzzling over how to explain it one more time, along comes a situation that makes my case for me. Here’s what happened: Essence Magazine just wrote a flattering piece about a product we submitted on behalf of a client. And, they were as overjoyed as we were at this valuable exposure. While the positive coverage was an excellent “hit” for the client on its own merits, the online exposure from the magazines’ own social media promotion added a multiplier effect. The product enjoyed an extraordinary boost by being disseminated to the magazine’s hundreds of thousands of followers. Essence directed their readers right to the article about the product through Twitter – and not just once, but multiple times over several days. You know, just in case they happened to miss it the first time. Or the second time. Or the third time. Or… This editorial coverage cultivates brand equity that money can’t buy. While traditional print has many of its own virtues, it’s hard to argue with the extra advantages that come with digital print. For one thing, it has staying power. It’s not unusual on the Internet to come across still-relevant articles that are one year, five years or 10 years old. And, of course, one of the greatest benefits is the ease with which an article can be shared, just the way Essence shared...