There’s a book out with the above title, and I highly recommend you grab a copy. It’s only available as a digital download and it’s less than 6 bucks at Amazon. I’ll try to summarize here it in my own words, but this is no substitute for getting the book, reading it and above all using it to generate free publicity for you and your business.
News breaks every second of every day, providing you with literally endless opportunities to get your business free publicity. And I don’t have to tell you that publicity is worth far, far more than advertising, and yet it costs you NOTHING.
If you’re in the U.S., does the Donald Trump presidential campaign ring any bells for you?
Look at it from a reporter’s point of view – they already have the who, what, when and where – what they need is the “why”, and that’s where you come in. Journalists need original content, and they need it fast. And if you play your cards right, you can be as high as the second paragraph of that breaking news story. Just think of what that can mean in terms of free exposure!
What is essential is SPEED. You’ve got to hit when the story is hot to have a shot at getting the publicity. Wait even a day and it may be too late.
Always use your good judgment. Your business is NOT a great fit for the majority of news stories, so be discriminate and only go with those that you can honestly, truly relate to your business.
Now then, how do you find news to “jack?” Keep your eyes and ears open, because you never know when the perfect story is going to slap you across the face. Monitor keywords, phrases and trending word clouds. Track journalists in your field and monitor media outlets. And perhaps the best tip of all – follow Twitter hashtags, since this will often be the very first reporting of any story.
When you hear of a story that’s a good fit for your business, immediately formulate your strategy. This is happening in real time and so you’ve got to act in real time, as in NOW and not tomorrow. Speed is crucial to your success in hijacking the news.
Ask yourself – how are you and / or your business related to the breaking news? What’s your angle or hook? Why should the media care?
When you’ve got your take on what’s happening – or your angle or hook – here are possible moves you can make next:
- Blog about your take on the news
- Tweet it using an established hashtag (this is not the time to start a new hashtag)
- Send a real-time media alert (press release)
- Talk about it in a speech, or make a video and post it online
- Hold a live or a virtual news conference
- Directly contact individual journalists who might be interested
Now if you’re thinking this article is just the tip of what you need to know, you’re right. It’s enough to get you started, but by all means grab the book so you can fill in the blanks.
And think about this: Linking yourself to one news story can result in hundreds of thousands of dollars of free publicity, creating a boon for your business and perhaps even making you a mini-celebrity in the process.