Free Publicity, Earned Media: The Power of Public Relations

Posted by Sharon Kehnemui on September 5, 2018

Reporters with cameras

“One of the most powerful techniques every business should use is free publicity. As the name implies, there is no cost, just the time and effort required to attract attention to your business.”

— Jay Abraham

What is “free publicity”? Free publicity is also called “earned media.” It’s attention from media and news sources, or in the Internet era, from celebrities or social media influencers (people who command a mass following for being professionals in their field, or maybe just from notoriety).

The key is it’s free. It’s not paid media, also known as advertising. It’s “earned,” meaning that those who repeat your information saw its value and shared it. They basically gave you something (publicity) for you giving them something (a reason for their audience to tune in). The information you provide can’t just be interesting, it has to be valuable.

Earned media comes from having a good message to give to the public, and it can boost your advertising results ten-fold.

By focusing on public relations — the act of building publicity in combination with merchandising and promotions — you can develop a good deal of “buzz.” But it takes a coordinated effort, and you have to offer newsworthy information, and follow up with media outlets to make sure they are publicizing that information.

With a solid plan in place, you’ll have a great approach to use public relations in the best way possible.

Here are the steps to get noticed by the media:

  1. Put together a press release for your company. The press release should be relevant to your target market and address consumer interest, not just announce your business.
  2. Compact your press release to include one hook and one angle. Choose the most attention-getting to make sure the media person you are sending it to is interested in reading it.
  3. Put your press release in professional formatting. With press releases you need a dateline, the most important information at the top, facts, figures and wrap it up with contact details including who and how. Print the press release on your letterhead.
  4. Send your press release to all television and radio stations, local and metro newspapers, national newspapers, industry magazines, and any other form of media that reaches your target market. Don’t forgot to include relevant blogs, online magazines, press release submission sites, and to industry professionals.

More importantly than a perfect press release is to make sure you have addressed the needs of your target market in the products/services you offer and have made them clear in the press release.

Lastly, don’t limit yourself. The attention of newspapers, television, radio, magazines, bloggers, and more are all equally powerful. Earned media can come from many different places, and the key is to provide a solution to a problem, a way to avoid a problem, or an opportunity for people to enhance their lives. Do that, and the media and public will be interested.

Our FREE test drive can show you how to put together press releases that work! Check out how the pros do it and craft the perfect press releases for your business.

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