Originally published on vidmid.com
Getting attention as a small business or startup can be an incredibly stressful ordeal. There is so much the average news outlet or blog covers that it can be hard to get their attention. While nothing can guarantee coverage, there are things you can do to inspire it as much as possible. Here, WNY Holdings, a New York-based digital marketing company, shares 7 of them:
1. Host an Event
The best way to get coverage is to create something that demands coverage. Events and the like can get people to pay attention to you, at the very least out of curiosity. An exclusive event where you invite news folk and influencers can yield massive dividends. Even if they do not end up covering whatever you announce at the event, the encounter should provide you with ample excuse to start a business relationship with the attendees.
2. Participate in Your Area
Nothing gets people to pay attention quite like charitable work. Offering discounts or even free services or products to your local area can get you a lot of positive coverage and publicity. If your community is in need, but your service cannot help directly, you can instead donate to a charity or volunteer. Those acts will have a similar impact, and as a bonus, will make you feel good inside.
3. Be a Consultant on Current Events
Showing off your expertise and knowledge is not just fantastic for your brand; it's also great for getting publicity for your small business. An excellent opportunity to show it off is to look for upcoming events or newsworthy items that are not necessarily accessible to the public. Then, figure out which outlets or influencers are going to cover that topic. Send them a quick email offering to serve as a professional consultant. Don't forget to let them know what your qualifications are to make your offer more tempting.
4. Be More Proactive
You likely have documents and responses ready to send out to outlets in case they show an interest. That is a good thing, but it's a reactive approach. Instead of waiting for them to find your newsworthy acts, you can let them know directly.
The most common way you can go proactive is to send pitches to local news outlets and influencers. Those pitches must refer to some upcoming or recently finished event your company had a part in, like a new product or a charitable contribution. You should also focus on contacting people whose beat or coverage includes your industry or target market. That will increase the odds of them responding positively to your pitch.
5. Utilize Social Media
Social media marketing is a powerful tool for a reason: reach. It is unlike anything in history. Anyone or anything can reach around the world in the blink of an eye. It's also great for inspiring coverage of your small business or product.
Utilizing social media is often a matter of forming an on-platform relationship with influencers and news outlets. Offering your take on current events by commenting on their posts, for example, can get them to notice and remember your name. From there, you can build a relationship with them.
6. Make a Splash
If you want to make the news, you have to make a splash. The good news is that it is a lot easier than it sounds. You should have to put a spin on something you are doing. For example, if you're running a baby product business and are attending an expo, you can invite local celebrities who are parents to serve as special guests. Alternatively, you can have some season-appropriate trick or a style for your booths that gets people talking. Even a few jokes or costumes here or there can leave a lasting impact on influencers and news outlets.
7. Make It Personal
Sometimes, it's less about your business and more about you, as well as your brand. Consider Elon Musk and how he is essentially Tesla personified. Half the news about Tesla and his other endeavors do not come from the business entities. They come from things Musk personally said or jokes that he made.
You can take a similar approach when it comes to attracting coverage - and the great news is, what gets attention does not necessarily have to be directly related to your company. The fact that you own a company and have a product will likely come up as the influencer or reporter is researching you. “Think of yourself as bait,” says Melissa Williams, co-founder of WNY Holdings. “When someone snaps up your news, you bring out your company.”
Getting news coverage isn't easy, but if you want your small business to succeed, you need to get it. Merely having a good product won't get people to buy it. People need to hear about it, to know that it exists, before they have a shot at becoming loyal consumers.
About WNY Holdings LLC
WNY Holdings LLC is a customer-focused digital marketing company that was started in 2018 to provide tailored marketing strategies for small businesses. WNY Holdings LLC helps restaurants, coffee shops, and retailers with all their digital marketing needs, from content marketing, web and graphic design, media creation, SEO, all the way to Facebook advertising.