One of the most important strategies a creative entrepreneur should have in place is the right PR. While promoting yourself and your project might seem a little vain, PR is key to helping you stand out in a crowded marketplace. Here are 5 tools which can help you do just that, and kick-start your journey to success.
1. A good bio: Not only is a great bio crucial for showcasing your career experience and expertise, but it also paves the way for possible media opportunities by telling people who you are and what you’re about. A winning bio includes information such as your background, qualifications and experience, area of expertise and examples of your work. Creating multiple versions of your bio provides flexibility across different situations. For example, a micro bio of 1-2 sentences is perfect for social media or adding to the bottom of articles, a 100-word bio is great for media opportunities, whereas a longer bio can be used for websites and conferences.
2. A plan of action: As the old adage goes, he who fails to plan is planning to fail. As such, it is important to have a PR strategy in place to guide your actions. Take the time to understand your business, what value you can offer to a journalist and the external environment around you. Reading publications daily and listening to the types of questions your clients and customers ask are great ways to help you develop compelling story angles worthy of the media’s interest.
3. Networks: Having conversations and connecting with people is one of the best ways to get your name out there. The more people know you and know what you can offer, the greater chance they’ll want to promote you and your work or recommend you to people in their own networks. It’s important to remember networking isn’t about selling yourself to others, or even talking about yourself. Rather, it’s about listening to other people and building relationships with them by investing the time and effort to find out about their own endeavours.
4. A pitch: Reaching out to the media via email and letting them know you’re available to comment on topics of interest is a great way to build your reputation and position yourself as an expert or media friendly personality. However, you need to be strategic in how you structure the email, or else you’ll find your message in the bin in a matter of seconds. When you sit down and write your introductory pitch, you need to keep in mind the type of journalist you’ll be sending it to. It pays to know their beat (the types of stories and topics they cover), their background and any other stories they have covered on the topic in the past.
5. A media list: Sending your pitch out to every single journalist in the country is not only impossible, but it is also incredibly ineffective. A media list is the ultimate arsenal for media outreach, including journalists, producers, editors, and even bloggers, who write stories on the key issues in your industry. To help you narrow down your options, think about the types of publications you would want to be featured in, and then identify the reporters who cover your topic of interest. A simple search online can often help you pinpoint key contacts in these publications, otherwise you can use a paid AAP service to gather the contact details for you. Another alternative is to subscribe to Source Bottle. This is a subscription service that connects Aussie reporters in need of sources to individuals actively looking for coverage and who have relevant stories and expertise to share. With more hundreds of journalists using the service, Source Bottle is a great way to establish a connection with journalists in your field of expertise.