1. Understand who you are pitching to
The very first thing you should do is think about what magazines or blogs are relevant to your business.
Do your research, and make sure you are relevant to the magazine or blog’s audience. There is no point reaching out to a magazine that has never covered a topic related to what you do. Look at what kind of content they publish. Have they written about businesses similar to yours? Fashion editors and journalists get hundreds of requests, press releases and look books sent to them every day and very few are typically a good fit. If you don’t have the right angle, they won’t even consider your story.
Pay attention to the tone and style of the language each magazine or blog speaks. When you reach out to them, try to speak in their same tone and style. Keep your message personal, short and snappy. Tailor your outreach to a targeted list of relevant contacts rather than sending out a generic press release to a huge list of media contacts. If you can, try to find a personal email or address and reach out directly to someone rather than send to a general info@ email or office address.
2. Find something newsworthy to say about what you’re doing
Think about the potential reader. What makes your story interesting and worth reading? Especially in today’s internet age, people are constantly bombarded with information and as a result have short attention spans. You will have a couple of seconds at most to capture someone’s attention, so make sure you say something fresh and timely. You might want to pin your story off the back of a recent announcement, news story, event or trend – even if it’s not directly relevant to your business, you might use it as a creative and timely angle. Why will people care about your business and what you have to say?
3. Make it easy for journalists – give them everything they need to run a story about you
Fashion editors, journalists and bloggers are typically busy people. They are inundated with fashion launches, press releases, events and producing their content. As they are time-starved individuals, why not help make their jobs easier. Don’t just send them your look book and a hello message, send them a story about your brand or products. Give them an angle you think might appeal to their audience. Make sure you send your beautiful high quality images (but try not send too many and make sure the files are not too big… there is nothing more annoying than being sent an unexpected file that clogs up your inbox).
4. Media relationships take time to develop
Don’t expect you are going to get press and publicity straight away. Don’t assume editors or bloggers will automatically be interested in what you’re doing, even if you have the best product possible or the most inspiring brand story. You have to nurture relationships with the media. It takes time but the key is being persistent, authentic and a bit clever in order to be memorable.
5. Consider working with a PR agency
You might want to think about hiring an agency to help you get publicity, especially if you are not good at communicating and not a natural networker. However, agency fees are typically very expensive. If you can afford the investment, a good PR agency can be a pivotal return on investment. Do your research. You want to find an agency that has other great clients and that values your sustainability story. Make sure you always get referrals and references before you choose your agency.
Image credit: Lapidarium
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