It’s no secret that the general public is more likely to trust the businesses featured in the content of any given media outlet over those who simply buy ad space. There’s an implied endorsement that comes with being part of an article as opposed to an ad. You can’t buy your way in to this type of coverage. You have to earn it.
The easiest way to accomplish this is to hire a local public relations firm to smooth the way into the coverage you desire. A good firm will provide the guidance and support you need to develop an approach that is most likely to yield results.
The downside of hiring professionals, besides the additional expense, is that they won’t have the same passion and drive for promoting your efforts as you will. However, they will keep you from making any media faux-pas that could hinder your odds of coverage.
Plenty of Resources
If you don’t want to allocate a budget for a public relations firm to handle your publicity needs, or you’d just prefer to do it yourself, you’ll want to take the time to learn how to pitch your ideas effectively and to the right people to attract coverage that counts.
There are many books, workshops, and online classes that can walk you through the process so that you can develop a full understanding of what gets covered and why and to learn who you need to contact and how. As a real estate investment professional, the most valuable of these will be those that focus on your local market – but general books and courses will certainly help get you started.
There are many rules and details that you’ll need to master to be an effective self-publicist, but the three most important ones to keep in mind are:
- Be Newsworthy
- Be Professional
- Be Consistent
Relevant & Timely
There are some things that are naturally newsworthy and will always attract the attention of journalists. Politics, Sports, Celebrities are just three categories that get top coverage and attention. The average real estate investment professional is unlikely to fall into any of these categories and so must work harder to ensure their efforts focus on being relevant and timely. It’s not just news because you think it’s important, it has to mean something to the viewers, listeners or readers of the media you’re targeting.
If you’re sending in a press release, you’ll want to make sure it conforms to industry standards. Journalists are no less overwhelmed than the rest of us. In fact, the argument could be made they are inundated with even more information and data than the average person. They’re looking for excuses not to read your release, so be sure you don’t give them one.
If you’re following up on a press release or pitch, make sure you’re making contact at a convenient time and in the way the journalist prefers. Doing things the way the journalist prefers will accentuate your credibility and increase your odds of coverage.
Consistent and Persistent
If you expect immediate coverage from your publicity seeking efforts you will likely be disappointed. Competition is fierce and there are only so many stories that can be covered on any given day. If your efforts are solid and truly newsworthy and relevant, you will be successful eventually, but you need to keep following the rules, remain relevant and keep trying. If you aren’t consistent in seeking coverage, you’ll be inconsistent with attracting media attention.