How to Get the Media to Notice Your Brand with PR Techniques


Lisa C. Hahn, Speaker/Moderator
Caugherty Hahn Communications, Inc.
lisa.hahn@chcomm.com; www.chcomm.com; 201-251-7778

Purpose of this Session
Ways to get the media to notice your brand

  • What’s news
  • How to find news within your company
  • How to frame the news
  • Tips on contacting the media
  • Barriers to usage
  • Case Studies

What we intend to share with you today:
  • Proven techniques to set your company on a course to launch a successful PR campaign
  • Identify stories within your company that the media will tell the public about.
  • Case studies that show how PR can help drive customers to your Web site and 800#

Some state “news” as anything that affects the lives and interests or stimulates the concern and curiosity of a significant number of people.

What is Public Relations?
  • 2-way communication
  • Awareness building
  • Motivation
  • Influence

What is the news media looking for?
What do they cover?


What is News?
  • Impact – the number of people affected, seriousness of the consequence, immediacy of the effect
  • Proximity – distance/closeness between the audience & problem or issue of concern
  • Timeliness – perishability – news get stale
  • Prominence – recognizable and well known
  • Novelty – the unusual, bizarre, deviant, and offbeat
  • Conflict – strikes, fights, disputes, wars, crimes, politics, and sports
  • Information Exchange – share information that will help others do their jobs
  • Self-Interest – stories that help readers make good decisions and improve their lives

Add Interest to your Story

  • Find a way to involve others.
  • Look for a milestone
  • Relate to the season
  • Find an inspiring character in the organization

5 News Topics That Get Coverage
  1. Employee Recognition
  2. Company Awards
  3. Charity/Community Involvement (Cause Marketing)
  4. Events
  5. Grand Openings

Hard News vs. Soft News
  • Hard News has a built in deadline
  • Soft News has
    • No immediacy and tends to offer tips or advice
    • Lower media pick up rate
    • Generates more space in publications than Hard News
    • More media value; avg. $319 per clip
Other News Hooks That Engage Media & Audiences Hard News
  • Conducting a poll or survey
  • Award announcements
  • Significant speeches
  • Formation of names of a committee
  • Staging a special event
  • Adaptation of national reports & surveys for local use
  • Tie-ins with well-known weeks and days
  • New product or company launch
  • Conducting a contest
  • Appearing before public bodies
  • Staging a debate
  • Taking part in a controversy
  • Issuance of a commendation

Other News Hooks That Engage Media & Audiences Soft News
  • Organizing a tour
  • Product PR

Make Messages Newsworthy
PR needs to frame the message for the gatekeepers – the news media decision makers, i.e., editors, reporters, producers
  • Understandable – uncomplicated, free of jargon, and simple to grasp
    • Members of an avian species of identical plumage congregate
    • Surveillance should precede saltation
    • It is fruitless to attempt to indoctrinate a superannuated canine with innovative maneuvers.
  • Topical or Local – to take advantage of audience interest in information that is both timely and close to home
  • Immediately actionable

Content should be framed so that the information
  • Answers questions
  • Responds to audience interests and concerns
  • Empowers numbers of people to act on their interest and concerns

News Releases, Phone Calls and Email
PR professionals distribute more than 1.5 million news releases every week

Most cited reasons cited for rejecting news releases

  1. Poorly written
  2. No news value
  3. No local interest
  4. Too much fluff
  5. Arrived too late
  6. Too long
  7. Story unrelated to journalists’ area of interest
  8. Email attachments
  9. Contact person’s inability to answer questions raised in release

The case for news releases
Media outlets don’t have the staff to fill all story needs to fill space without PR pointing them out
Best way to bring story ideas to reporters’ attention

Media Relations Tips
  • Don’t be intimidated
  • Be prepared for the worst possible questions
  • Media have their story objective. If your organization doesn’t fit, say so
  • Speed counts
  • The purpose of being interviewed is not to answer questions
  • “I don’t know” gains respect
  • Defend your company if you are on solid ground
  • Look for the news hook
  • Always have alternative story angles to pitch
  • Offer visuals
  • Provide complete, interesting captions to get more space
  • Thank reporters after a story appears
  • Look for multi-news steps to your story

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