PR for small business

Media Outreach: Summer Slowdown is your BFF

summermediapitching_maggiepatterson.comSummer, however fleeting, can be an entrepreneur’s BFF when it comes to working with the media. Regardless of when your summer is or what hemisphere you are in, it is a sloooooooooow time of year for the media.

Think about it. Any organization that has big news tries to keep it for when people are engaged and they can get eyeballs or viewers.  In 15 years in PR, I’ve experienced this phenomenon, well, 15 times.  News dries up and people sit on stories waiting for summer to end.

From the perspective of a writer or producer, the wave of pitches slow to a trickle. They suddenly have to hustle to find good stories.

This, my entrepreneurial darlings, is where you come in.

Less competition means this is your time to let your light shine.  More opportunities for you to pitch and secure a spot on your local TV station’s morning show or be part of a feature story in your city’s daily newspaper.

So, What Should you Pitch?

A natural fit in the summer months are stories about summer.  A lot of times, these are going to be general interest stories that can run anytime during the summer.  Here’s some pitching examples:

  • Health coach = strategies for avoiding vacation weight gain

  • Yoga teacher = moves to keep you cool in summer heat

  • Relationship expert = five fun summer dates

You get my drift. Short, fun and summery angles that appeal to a broad audience. That’s not to say if you have a more serious topic, this isn’t a good time to pitch it either.  Just nail your story angle, do some research on your target outlets and go from there.

Not Sure Who to Contact?

  • At TV stations look for producers or assignment editors, or even general pitching or news emails.

  • For radio, research the hosts (and possibly producers) of shows

  • For print publications, find the section that is most relevant to your topic and look for a section editor, managing editor or beat reporter.

A quick note, for this type of seasonal, quick turnaround story, avoid magazines as they work months ahead of time and are likely working on Fall or even Winter issues now.

Just remember, their news hole is your opportunity. Never assume your pitch is a slam dunk, but be clear on what you are offering and how it will benefit their audience. Plus, establish why you are qualified as an expert on this topic.

Go Local, Even if you are Online

Even if you run a mainly online business, local papers, radio and TV stations are great targets for you to do media outreach to support your business.  It’s an ideal way to build your credibility as an expert while practicing your message and preparing you for the national TV segment you are dreaming up.

Consider this a warm up for your 15 minutes of mega stardom while building some social proof in the process. Win – win for everyone. And hey, you may score a new client or two in the process.

Go forth and pitch. Go send that email now!

Grab your (free) Summer Pitching Cheat Sheet. (No opt-in, no nothing. Just solid PR strategy.) 

P.S. You need the report below to help you get ready your web site ready for your fame!