Press Releases WTF: What’s the Frequency?
Last time, we talked about building a relationship with the press and being involved with your industry. It’s a long process but well worth the effort, assuming it’s done correctly. Now, for the sake of this example, let’s assume you’ve found a few journalists whose beat overlaps with your company’s offering.
More is More...
Often, we hear it said that less is more, and in many instances, there is some truth to that sentiment. In this particular matter, though, more is more. When a journalist is unsure about a business, they often use the “wait and see” approach to see whether or not this business is worth their time. We can’t blame them; if they cover a story that turns out to be a flop, the joke is on the journalist.
The problem is that while the journalist is deciding whether or not a particular company is worth writing about, that company is likely waiting to see the response to its very first press release. After they’ve spent the time writing and tweaking it, getting a cold reception is often taken as an indication that press releases aren’t worth the time and effort.
This couldn’t be further from the truth.
We’ve said it before, and it is worth repeating a PR campaign is not a quick ordeal. It takes a lot of time, effort, and above all, patience before it bears any fruit. With that in mind, your company should issue press releases quarterly at an absolute minimum. More press releases mean more media engagement and also show prospective journalists that your company is, in fact, worth their time.
“Press releases should be issued quarterly. At an absolute minimum.”
The more press releases a company issues, the greater the chances journalists have to become familiar with your company. Additionally, a higher frequency of press releases creates a public record of changes, deeds, and events within your company. Of course, the frequency of press releases is determined by how often newsworthy events occur within your company. For larger companies, this could be weekly or even daily. For smaller businesses, monthly releases tend to garner the best results. Not to put too fine a point on it, but quarterly is the longest you should go between releases to maintain a media presence.
Just make sure your press release is newsworthy.
And When Less is More...
The flip side to frequency is when it comes to fostering a relationship with a particular journalist.
After you’ve found a journalist covering your business, it can be tempting to rush to them with a press release ready. Of course, this is the wrong way to go about things. The best approach is the one you make when you’re not looking for something. Just like meeting new people in life, keep it simple. Introduce yourself, and leave maybe a comment on one of their articles you found particularly insightful so they know you actually follow their work. Additionally, by following their work, you’ll learn what topics they cover and how frequently they report and find additional opportunities to make contact in a less overbearing or pushy way.
It’s a delicate balance between making your presence known and not being obtrusive, and it can take some time to do it right.
It is important to note that when attempting to “woo” a journalist, do NOT try and put a journalist in a position where they might owe you a favor, such as giving gifts.
Journalists abide by an ethical code, which keeps things unbiased and allows them to maintain integrity. Trying to curry favors can ultimately damage your relationship with the journalist, earn your company a poor reputation, and could even cost someone their job.
As we’ve said, fostering relationships with the media and journalists is tricky and time-consuming. We know because we specialize in doing just that. Just remember, building a strong relationship with media outlets can’t be rushed. It takes years and lots of effort. If your company needs help, working with an experienced PR and marketing agency can make all the difference.