Getting your brand featured in print or an online publication (without paying for it) requires strategy and preparation. Sometimes, an opportunity lands in your inbox and you didn’t even have to go out pitching and poking around. Other times, you finally get the notoriety you’ve desired after seemingly endless emails and info sharing. Either way, if your brand is not ready, a press feature can be overwhelming, stressful, and potentially even negative for your business. So, here are five things you can do to help prepare your brand for press right now!
Make Sure Your Website and Socials are Up-To-Date
This is a no-judgment zone (and remember, I can’t hear you anyway) but when was the last time you actually updated your website or your Instagram bio? Probably longer than you care to admit. If you’re wanting to earn some press features, or if one has found you, then you cannot afford to be mentioned or featured without a little updating. Think of it this way – wouldn’t you tidy up your home before welcoming guests? It’s the same thing.
Freshen up your website, start using social media more consistently, refresh your bios, and double check everything you’re sharing is accurate and functional.
Have Your Assets Ready To Go
I’m willing to bet that the last time you were relaxing with friends and family you shared a picture with them from your phone. It was right at your fingertips, ready to go, and it likely pushed the conversation forward. The same principle applies with press – have those pictures, links, fact sheets, and honorable mentions ready to go!
The best way to keep everything for outside press sources ready and refreshed is to create a Google Drive folder. Within it, you can organize pictures and information and then send one link via email, rather than clogging up someone’s inbox with files and photos. Don’t forget to include your logo and a staff photo or headshot of yourself in the content, too.
Know Your Story and How to Tell It
If I asked you to tell me about your brand in just 3 words, could you do it? Sometimes, a press feature doesn’t give you the chance to tell your entire story and instead, gives you a one-line opportunity to promote your brand. Other times, you are given more space to share your story.
It is your responsibility to tell your story regardless of length and to do this, you must remember one thing: it’s not about you!
Seems backward, huh? Nope. When your brand is being featured, you have a direct line to customers so you want to know exactly how to tell your story to get them in your doors. This could mean leaving out the fact you’ve been operating for 40 years, or that you’re a passionate business owner and replacing that info with your signature items, statements on inclusivity, sustainability practices, and/or special offers.
Prepare for Profits
The power of press is that it gets you noticed but it’s not a guarantee. Some brands see a huge boom from just one small mention, while others see a nominal short-term effect. Since it’s unpredictable you need to be prepared. If you’re currently short-staffed, booked out for the next three months, or dealing with supply chain issues making operations challenging, re-think whether or not this is the best time for you to be featured.
If you are confident that you’re ready for press, have plans in place to bring in the profits. Ensure that your suppliers and staff can handle a sudden influx of patrons. If you sell a product, ensure that you can get it produced and shipped ASAP. I mean, have you ever shopped a Black Friday sale only to get your stuff after the New Year? What a pain! Don’t be one of those brands. Disclaimer: I’m not encouraging you to spend money before you make it, preparing for people you may never see. I’m simply advocating for planning based on press features.
Pitch Your Brand
So you’ve read this article, perhaps made a to-list of tasks, and now you’re like, “wait a second, I don’t have any press!” No worries, this is where the fun begins – batter up and start pitching! You are your brand’s expert. You know everything and more and you likely have a list of dream publications you’d love to be featured within. While you can easily hire out your PR efforts, with a little time and strategy, you can pitch your brand yourself.
Want to learn how? Pick up PRESS PREP where I teach you the ins and outs of pitching + give you a no-fail, fully customizable media pitching email template + include a strategy call with me to review everything on this list and make sure you’re set up for success.