Here is a five-point guide to what we ask of our clients before engaging the local media:
A good story: Journalists are there to serve the interests of their readers or viewers, not your company. What can you say that reflects the interests of people in the outside world?
Good pictures: Journalism is as much about pictures as words. Be prepared to be photographed or filmed and think about what props you can use to illustrate your story.
Reliability and timeliness: Journalists work to extremely tight deadlines and so need near-instant responses. Can you provide relevant quotes and information at short notice?
Strong opinions and engaging words: The media love people who have something to say and use every-day, descriptive language when they open their mouths.
Are you a brand ambassador?: The media will forgive you a plug for your product or website as long as you don’t overdo it – and beware saying anything that compromises your brand.
We may have a love/hate relationship with our country’s media, but there is no doubt that we love reading and listening to the news. Issues, intrigue and downright gossip make the world go round.
This is as true in the cities and towns of the East Midlands as it is for the whole of the country, which is why there is a wealth of print, online and broadcast media operating across Derby, Nottingham and Leicester – as well as everywhere in between – gathering news on a daily basis.
It is still a powerful medium, but harnessing this power to spread your message requires an understanding of how the media work, what they are looking for – and how you can ensure your message isn’t lost along the way.