I have been working as a freelance publicist for the last 10 years or so.
My job as a publicist is to get the traditional media to write stories about my clients.
Now, over the last 6 years, I have increasingly moved away from traditional media, and immersed myself deeper and deeper in social media. And I’m not putting down the concept of you “growing your own.” in fact, one of my #1 suggestions for growing your personal brand is to have a blog, something we’ll talk about in later weeks.
But a great way to get you out there, and to get you seen and heard by a wider audience, is to get yourself into newspapers, magazines, TV and radio. You can reach a much wider audience, much quicker.
Here are some tips to get your face out there.
Who in the traditional media writes or does a show (radio or TV) on things that you can speak about because they are in your area of expertise? Start following these people, start reading and watching their work. Compile a database of these people, and start to try to create relationships with them by reaching out and interacting with them (in a non-spammy, “real” way) via social media. Twitter is particularly good for this.
Next, you have two options: you can either pitch them a specific story that is related to you and what you do, or, you can send them an email and introduce yourself as and expert, if they ever need to have someone like you on the show.
Charities and Non-profits: could you pair with a charity or a non-profit org? You could do fundraising for them, or create an event or a project. Media loves to cover these kinds of things, especially this time of the year.
Look through your social circles. Do you know anyone in the media? Even if they can’t get you into their publication or show, they may be able to liaise with the right person, or recommend you.
I know we’re talking about traditional media here, but well-established new media might also be worth exploring. Are there bloggers who do profile pieces that you might fit into? Is there a vlogger or a podcaster you know who might be willing to have you as a guest on their show? It’s really all about extending your reach, and introducing yourself to a new audience that maybe was unaware that you exist.
Register for HARO. Help a Reporter Out is an online service where reporters post ads, looking for “experts” for them to interview for stories. You’ll get a daily digest with all these requests, and then you can respond to the ones that work for you.
I would also look for lists of media on Twitter, where you live, and follow them. Media are often putting out the call for interviews for stories they are working on these days through social media.
Have any of you had success getting yourselves into newspapers, or on TV or the radio? Share how you did it in the comments section below!