In my previous posts, I discussed the first five secrets of highly effective publicity pros:
- Understanding how the media works.
- Doing your homework.
- Developing good stories.
- Balancing traditional and “new” media, and
- Writing well.
Here are the last two secrets.
Secret #6: Treat the media (including “citizen journalists”) professionally.
This may seem so obvious that it shouldn’t even be mentioned, but treat the media professionally.
Respond if they contact you.
Train your company spokesperson in media interview techniques. Without training, many people either clam up or talk too much, either of which makes for a poor interview.
Always be polite. Years ago someone was rude to the assistant of a prominent technology journalist. He went public, making it clear what he thought about such behavior. It’s fair to assume that the offending PR person never got coverage in that column. Be kind to everyone, regardless of their title or responsibility.
And keep things in perspective. An editor told me he had received angry calls from PR people about the content of an article. I, too, had contacted him about an error in that article, but did so calmly and politely. I didn’t destroy my relationship with him; I enhanced it.
Your Mother was right. Be nice.
Secret #7: Give publicity a fair try.
I find many people get discouraged and quit their publicity activities too easily. I’ve joked about starting the one-news-release club because I’ve seen so many companies send out one or two news releases, think that they’ve given public relations a “fair try” and then stop.
It’s the old adage, 80 percent of success is just showing up. If you want publicity, you need to keep “showing up.”
And there you have it, seven secrets of highly effective publicity pros. I’m sure there are many more secrets. (I’ve thought of several while writing this.)
What secret would you like to share?
More information about public relations is available on my website at www.CommunicationsPlus.net/PRArticles.html.