Phoenix Jackson – The Consigliere

39 Prominent Publicists Share Their Top 3 Tips To Earn Media Coverage

“Marketing” means to take measures to help bring your product or service to the market. There are two basic means of marketing, Paid Media and Earned Media. Paid Media includes advertising such as a TV ad or a Facebook ad. The advantage of paid media is that it is fairly early to obtain, and it can also be targeted to a very specific demographic. The drawback of Paid Media is that it is less credible or believable. Consumers know that anyone can pay for an advertisement. Earned Media is another form of marketing. Earned media is when a company or individual is discussed in an editorial or journalistic segment, like this Buzzfeed article, for example. The advantage of Earned Media is that it is much more credible, because there is an assumption that the journalist or editors chose to cover the company or individual based on merit and not because there was any financial exchange. The drawback of Earned Media is that it is much more difficult to obtain. So indeed, how does one earn, Earn Media? I turned to 39 prominent publicists, people who’s job is to help people earn media coverage, to share their top 3 tips to get featured in the Media. Here are their ideas:

Nubia DuVall Wilson, President/Founder, Cielo Consulting

Celestina Ando

My PR Background

Nubia DuVall Wilson is the founder of the boutique public relations and marketing agency Cielo Consulting, which focuses on luxury lifestyle and travel. Her passion is supporting entrepreneurs and small businesses growth through PR campaigns, strategic partnerships and digital marketing. Throughout her agency career she worked with some of the biggest names in spirits, food and travel, including Bacardi Rum and its portfolio, Mustique Island, Preferred Hotel Group and Eden Rock — St Barths.

My Top 3 Suggestions to Get Media Coverage

1. Think about your audience and connect that segment with the appropriate news outlet. Not every outlet will be appropriate once you are able to fine tune your perfect customer and what they most likely read. A five-star hotel launching the world’s most luxurious suite would be of interest to an editor Robb Report, but not at Budget Travel.

2. Give editors a why now reason to cover your news. Create timely news hooks that will fit into news stories media are most likely already crafting. National holidays, the seasons, major events like the Olympics or election year are just a few examples. Don’t forget about timing. To get into a print magazine, you’ll need to pitch months in advance so that your story hits at the right time.

3. What makes your company different from the rest? You need to be able to explain to media why they should write about your company versus others. For example, New York City has hundreds of Italian restaurants. What will make a New York Times food editor write a feature on one restaurant over another — especially if it has been open for years? Let’s create some news. The restaurant could launch a new menu program, such as a special sensory tasting menu inspired by a current event in the news for a limited time. Now there is a reason to invite media to try something new at the restaurant and a call to action for diners to return for a unique experience.

Margo Schneider, SVP, Managing Director, Media Relations at M Booth & Associates

My PR Background

Margo has more than 18 years of public relations experience and has practiced media relations across a variety of areas, including healthcare, technology, brand marketing, travel & hospitality, corporate, B2B, consumer products, and food and wellness. Her dynamo team is skilled at fueling creative news engines, crafting media strategies that differentiate clients and sustaining relationships with key media.

You name it, she’s pitched it. A few highlights? Barbie’s appearance in Sports Illustrated, Doritos famous Crash the Superbowl program, the Candy Crush frenzy, TOMS One Day Without shoes, IBM’s groundbreaking Smarter Planet platform, Weight Watchers new Freestyle program, Tinder’s International Women’s Day effort and Google’s top trending searches of the year.

Prior to joining MBooth, Margo spent 13 years at a large NY-based agency and spent two years at Estee Lauder Companies.

My Top 3 Suggestions to Get Media Coverage

Do your research. Google, friend and follow members of the media that you admire or report on your client’s space. A base knowledge of the nuances in the journalist’s coverage and the ability to pitch in a more personal and helpful way will only benefit both parties. Also, consider what’s trending or viral. If the internet is buzzing about something, chances are media will be more interested in covering it. So, check out Buzzfeed and Google Trends among other resources to inform your pitch.

Be a person (not a robot). Think about what it would be like to receive your pitch if YOU were the journalist. If it were a robotic, template pitch (*gasp), you wouldn’t pay attention. But, if the pitch appealed to your interests (e.g. running or enjoying craft beer) and it was clear that the sender put a great deal of thought into the story idea, you’d be more apt to respond, right? Be helpful, not sales-y.

Tap into naturally-occurring coverage themes. Media contacts don’t need to cover your client’s products or services. They do, however, want to cover heat moments like the Grammy’s or the comeback of a hot show on Netflix. Try to find an organic tie to one of these moments. For example, M Booth recently worked with client HeluvaGood to create this fanny pack, which holds your chips, dip and beer during the big game. It became an internet sensation. Now imagine if we just pitched the dip alone. Not as fun, right?

Lynn Cooper, CEO, Socially Ahead

My PR Background

Known for her seamless ability to navigate online platforms and drive traffic through digital media, Lynn specializes in the training, development and implementation of effective communication and marketing strategies for consumer brands and charitable organizations.

My Top 3 Suggestions to Get Media Coverage

Tip 1: Use the Social Media Side Door. The side door in this case is using ads on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram to reach reporters. These targeted communications will put your brand on reporters’ radars and build recognition for when you pitch them.

Tip 2: Use analytics and metrics. Let data help you determine what topics need more coverage. You can either pitch these topics, provide multimedia to specific reporters or create compelling content that will attract reporters’ attention

Tip 3: Be Culturally Competent: When building campaign ensure that your copy and assets are not seen as offensive to other races, genders, nationalities or religions. If you are unsure then reach out to other professionals in the space that can provide you with feedback. Unsure of what I mean — take a look at the PR nightmares that H&M, Shea Moisture, & Pepsi created for lack of cultural competency.

Rosie Mattio Public Relations

My PR Background

Rosie Mattio is founder of Rosie Mattio Public Relations a full -service, boutique, public relations firm specializing in Cannabis and the businesses that are moving the industry forward. As one of the first publicists in the rapidly growing space, RMPR has also established itself as the premier agency for Cannabis businesses in Seattle and throughout the country.

My Top 3 Suggestions to Get Media Coverage

My top tip for getting coverage is use your company’s data as opposed to pitching a look how great we are story . Journalists are less interested in featuring your business (it’s not their job to do an Ad for you) as they are in featuring larger trends that your business has insights in to. If you have great data it lends to an interesting story that in tern will position your business and its executives as experts and thought leaders.

Janet A. Dickerson, Co-Founder/Principal, Human Impact Solutions

My PR Background

Janet Dickerson is a seasoned PR and Communications expert who, for more than a decade, has worked with change agents in Arts, Culture, Politics, Philanthropy, and Organizing to help shift narratives and shape perception. Dickerson began her career in politics, serving as Press Officer for now-U.S. Senator Cory Booker while he was Mayor of Newark, New Jersey, and branched off in 2010 to launch her boutique consulting group Human Impact Solutions. Dickerson’s clientele over the past decade has included the Campaign for Black Male Achievement, #OscarsSoWhite Creator April Reign, Award-winning journalist Kevin Powell, Organizer/Journalist Rosa Clemente, Blackout for Human Rights, and Sankofa, the organization founded by legendary actor, entertainer and humanitarian Harry Belafonte.

My Top 3 Suggestions to Get Media Coverage

1.BE AUTHENTIC. In this business, it’s so important to invest in relationships that aren’t merely transactional but rooted in respect and authenticity. This goes for media relationships especially. Journalists and bloggers are more than just their bylines, and are also well-trained to decipher who really follows their work (or has least made the effort to research it) versus those who’ve barely taken the time to read past their Twitter bios. Always do your due diligence and reach out with the intent to build a rapport and truly be a resource, even when you’re not pushing a story. It will go far in establishing reciprocity that will offer long-term benefits for your clients’ reputation, and your own.

2. BE ON TIME. There are few things worse than pitching a journalist only to read Sorry! I’ve already covered that. If there’s something happening in the news cycle that you or your client is an authority on, waste no time in getting your pitch together and reaching out to the right journalist. In this fast-paced media world stories die quickly, so the more rapid your response, the more likely your story will get picked up!

3. USE TWITTER. I quickly learned that Twitter is an especially good way to stand out from the thousands of emails journalists get every day. Before sending a pitch I will sometimes reach out to writers on Twitter asking for their email address (even if you already have, never hurts to confirm) and if they accept story ideas. Not only can they see who you actually are, they’ll be able to share in full transparency whether they’re open to outside sources. If they say yes, it’s important to be fast and immediately follow-up while you’re still fresh in their mind. Another pro-tip: including Twitter follow-up in the subject line has also helped make sure my email actually does get opened.

4. ALWAYS FOLLOW-UP. I know we’ve been conditioned to accept and even expect rejection. However sometimes journalists really do miss the first email and many actually appreciate a quick follow-up! However, if you don’t hear back after then, leave it alone or straight into their spam folder you’ll go.

Macy Harrell, Creative Communications Consultant, The Posh Connect

My PR Background

Macy Harrell is a Creative Communications pro who has spearheaded successful marketing and PR campaigns for businesses in the beauty, lifestyle and consumer category. Beyond traditional media, she’s been known to diversify her client’s brands in the beauty space to include people of different backgrounds in their messaging and visuals. Her creative 360° approach to consumer communications has led to increased visibility, community growth and established the reputations of businesses across the US market.

My Top 3 Suggestions to Get Media Coverage

Sell a story — In the consumer space in particular, it’s easy to bog our pitches down with facts about products, selling points and the in between. While those things may be important, the story is what makes something newsworthy. No one really wants to read a self-serving advertisement when they’re consuming media and journalists know that. People are looking for stories that inspire, entertain or help them in some way. If your pitch doesn’t do that, scrap it and start over. Once you truly put yourself in the reader’s shoes it becomes second nature to stop selling products and accolades and start selling stories and solutions.

Build Relationships — We are all more likely to open e-mails from people we know. Build genuine relationships with other professionals, not just for the sake of a media hit but because relationships ALWAYS matter. Being well-connected will always be a service to you. The number of pitches that are rejected each day by journalists is staggering. In addition to not taking that personal, do something to set yourself a part and be authentic.

Make it relevant — Tying your pitch to something you know is relevant to that writer, that publication, their audience or current events is always a good idea. Become a genuine consumer of their content and follow their trajectory of interest before pressing send. If your story idea fills a gap in their coverage or gives an interesting spin on a topic they’ve covered, you’ll be more likely to get your foot in the door.

Lindsey Smolan, Founder, Lindsey Smolan PR

My PR Background

Lindsey Smolan is the founder of LSPR, a beauty, fashion, and lifestyle public relations firm headquartered in New York City.

After honing her expertise both working in-house and consulting for NYC public relations firms, Lindsey launched her own agency focusing on her love of communicating great stories and unique products from top fashion, beauty, and lifestyle brands.

Today LSPR is headquartered in midtown Manhattan and counts gorgeous accessories, fresh fashions, and innovative beauty products in its client line-up.

My Top 3 Suggestions to Get Media Coverage

1) Always have all of your assets ready! If you are a product based company, you’ll often get requests for high-resolution imagery of your products from print and digital editors. Be sure to have both flat shots against a white background and lifestyle images — different outlets may want different things, and having both helps increase your chances of coverage.

2) Learn to speak in soundbites, but be ready to elaborate when necessary. When you are pitching media with your expert advice or tips, break it down into as few words as possible (editors are busy and don’t have time for lengthy pitches!) but be ready to answer more in-depth questions should they want to interview you.

3) Learn the art of the follow-up. Editors and influencers are incredibly busy people who are pitched all day long — sometimes an email gets lost in their inbox and needs some gentle follow-up. They always say follow-up is an art and not a science — so true! You want to make sure your contact gets the information you’re sending them but don’t want to get to the point where you are bothering them. A great strategy is to follow up about a week later with a different angle or additional information — if you don’t hear back after that it usually means it’s not a fit for anything they are currently working on and it’s best to let it go. Editors often will add you or your brand to their source folder so don’t be surprised if you hear back from a pitch months (sometimes even more than a year!) later!

Molly Lynch, Managing Director, Lynch Communications Group

My PR Background

Get the buzz your company needs — either in traditional PR or social media. Seasoned PR & social media professional who launched my company more than 10 years ago. We place clients in top tier media every week, often daily. And I teach this work at DePaul University.

My Top 3 Suggestions to Get Media Coverage

Top three tips for good media coverage: 1. Have a GREAT story that connects with something timely and relevant. For example, position your executive as an expert on one of the top news stories. 2. Build relationships, but not overnight. In slow (if that exists) time, offer to have coffee or lunch with journalists you regularly work with or want to work with. 3. Write an e-pitch that works for you and for the reporter, complete with a subject line that’s true and engaging. And copy (often in bullets) that is clear on what you’re offering.

Robert Vanisko, Director, North 6th Agency

My PR Background

Robert Vanisko oversees the N6A Cannabis Group, which represents a wide variety of companies within the legal cannabis industry. In addition to overseeing group operations, he provides messaging, branding, and strategy support across his base of clients. Robert is a graduate of the University of Miami and resides in Brooklyn, New York.

My Top 3 Suggestions to Get Media Coverage

1. Make yourself useful. The best asset that any PR professional can have is the ability to be useful to journalists. Rather than incessantly pitching your own stories, look at the assets you have on hand and figure out how you can make them helpful to a journalist and their beat.

2. Take an education-first approach. If you are working in an emerging industry (like in my case, cannabis), journalists quite often don’t know how to cover the subject matter just yet. They get bombarded with pitches that are pushing their own agendas, and thus could have difficulty separating what is legit from what isn’t. By taking an education-first approach, and serving as a guide to navigate an industry in an impartial way, you can develop a real trust in the journalists that you work with, ultimately leading to stronger media results for your clients.

3. Don’t treat interviews as pitch meetings. We’ve all been in situations where we secure a media interview for a client, and that client immediately launches into a pitch about their own company. While some background information can set the stage as to why your client is an expert on the subject matter, overdoing it will often lead to the journalists tuning out. By extensively prepping clients beforehand on a less is more approach to an interview, you will ultimately facilitate a stronger bond between client and journalist, increasing the likelihood of that journalist coming back to you and your client for future stories.

Kelly Walsh, Senior Publicist, Right Angle PR

My PR Background

Kelly got a comprehensive view of the inner workings of record labels during her tenure at Century Media and Prosthetic Records with

bands such as Arch Enemy, Marty Friedman, Animals As Leaders, Scale The Summit and Skeletonwitch. Doing jobs that ranged from

sales to marketing to managing the label’s online presence and, of course, PR, she gained a lot of experience in a relatively short

amount of time. She brings branding and event planning experience (as with her work on Chris Hardwick’s ID1OT Music Festival and

Comic Con-ival) as well as a great relationships with the press to her duties at Right Angle PR.

My Top 3 Suggestions to Get Media Coverage

Having worked with a vast array of artists, from mainstream to obscure/niche genres, ranging in levels from new and unsigned to major label success, knowing how to obtain good media coverage is key. Here are my three tips:

1.Think Outside The Box

– With competition being at it’s peak, look for non-traditional approaches to garnering press for your client on top of your regular outlets. When I sign a new client, I have them fill out a personal survey that gives me insight to their likes/dislikes, hobbies and interests that fall outside of their main career. I research sites that target those interests and look for ways to make a connection. For example, one of my previous clients was a professional yo-yo’er and competed on the weekends/when not on tour. I reached out to Duncan and we had limited-edition yo-yo’s featuring the new album and set up a yo-yo lesson accompanied with the single from the album playing in the background on their website and socials reaching a whole new audience of potential fans!

2. Have A Solid Pitch & Ask For What YOU Want

– Be informative & get to your point in the first few sentences. Tell the writer/editor what YOU want from them instead of leaving it up to them to figure out placement — the less work they have to do the better. Avoid over-selling by narrowing down your featured points and making them specific to the site you are pitching or the story you are trying to promote.

3. Network & Keep Up With Relationships

– Get out there and introduce yourself to editors, journalists, bookers, EVERYONE — even if you’re not pitching anything! You never know when you might have a client that fits and when it time comes to pitch you’ll have already built a solid relationship. People change jobs all the time, so you never know when your old intern might end up being a writer at the magazine you want to get that review in!

Kathlene Carney, Owner, Carney & Associates

My PR Background

For more than 20 years, Carney & Associates has been providing publicity services for authors, experts, products and services that improve our world. We specialize in providing earned media coverage for clients whose mission aligns with our values, with an emphasis on science and sustainable living, healthy families, and personal development. We share their stories through strategic placements in radio, TV, print and digital media, and we excel in Radio Media Tours, still among the most cost-effective PR tools for reaching a broad audience.

My Top 3 Suggestions to Get Media Coverage

1. Make yourself available to respond immediately to breaking news in your area of expertise. For example, we specialize in sustainability issues and provide real-time authoritative commentary on loosening EPA regulations, science censorship, solar panel tariffs, threats to our parks, etc.

Afterwards, thank the journalist for coverage, and offer to help anytime. Your contributions might not result in immediate coverage but remember you’re building goodwill for the longterm, proving that you’re a reliable source for short-staffed, overworked newsrooms. Remember to include your phone number!

2. Always provide information specific to the journalist’s audience. You can talk directly to your own audience through your social media, earned media is about helping reporters get their own views and clicks. For example, when promoting a book about the clean money revolution and impact investing, we went beyond just pitching business journalists. We also developed relevant angles for health and spiritual media by focusing on money as energy and using it with a divine intention to help others. Editors who wouldn’t normally cover finance were happy to run our stories because they spoke directly to their readers.

3. If you’re promoting a book, start at least four months prior to your publication date. Send galleys to long-lead media, create your website or web page for the book, and have your digital press kit ready to go. You’ll want to include hi-res jpeg of the book cover and author photo, interior images if relevant, a press release about the book, testimonials, author bio, author Q&A, and a list of media angles and suggested excerpts.

Erica Hicks Anderson, Founder + Chief Communications Officer, PR VEIN

My PR Background

Erica planned her whole life to be her own boss. In 2014, she launched a strategic communications firm, PR VEIN, in New York City after honing her unique skills from Florida A&M University, New York University, Vogue Magazine, KCD Worldwide, IMG, and Net-a-Porter Group. The strategist and part-time college professor has experience in both agency and corporate communications, specializes in national publicity, strategy and development, integrated marketing communications campaigns, influencer marketing and management. Erica’s clients and colleagues say PR VEIN is known for executing complicated objectives, creating innovative IMC campaigns, securing top-tier placements and strategically helping companies re-brand and re-launch effectively.

My Top 3 Suggestions to Get Media Coverage

1. Research is by far the best way to get great media coverage. Do not send blast emails with broad details about the your client or brand. Spend a few minutes reviewing each editor’s role, past work, and style so you have a clear understanding of his or her beat. If you want a response, you cannot be lazy by sending the same vague and stale pitch that doesn’t even relate to the journalist’s beat. When editors know you’ve done your homework, they will respect your role and your story by putting their best foot forward either right away or at a later date. I cannot tell how many times an editor has emailed me months later to revisit a story idea. They value real effort, smart professionals, and research.

2. Master your follow-up skills. Please note that it is the journalist’s job to interact with you by clarifying if the pitch is a yes, no, or maybe (need more information). They have an email and phone provided by the outlet for a reason, so do not be afraid to follow-up on a good pitch. If you send an email pitch, follow-up the next day with an email and then, call by the 4th or 5th day (much sooner if the pitch pertains to breaking news or an exclusive offer). Timing is the best approach to following up so always utilize your phone — too often we depend solely on email but pick up the phone so you can get a yes, no, or maybe. Some of my best work was confirmed on the phone after following up via email. Because of my handy-dandy iPhone, I’ve secured placements in Forbes, The New York Times, and WWD. As a fellow master of follow up, it is also vital to know when to give up on the pitch and the editor if you do not get a response. Never, ever harass anyone by being a pest. Go to the next editor and keep revising your pitch until you find the right outlet and journalist.

3. Build long-lasting media relationships by pitching the story idea with a clear hook and a call-to-action. Think about how journalists write — they never bury the lead so you shouldn’t either. Think about how journalists network — they want organic and genuine interactions. Within the first three seconds of reading your pitch, the journalist should be able to connect the dots to the outlet and identify the most interesting element. What’s the hook? What makes this interesting to their audience? Why should they respond? After you clearly communicate the wow factor, seal it with a call to act. Let me know your thoughts. Can you hop on a brief call in an hour or in the morning? Is this of interest? Find a way to motivate the journalist to respond. Before your pitch, allot time and resources to get to know key journalists in your market. Set up coffee meetings, desk sides, and attend events. Do not wait to get to know them or introduce yourself when you need coverage.

Esha Dev, Principal & Founder, Saffron Public Relations

My PR Background

Esha, Principal & Founder at Saffron Public Relations, is a seasoned PR and brand strategy professional with extensive experience in strategic planning and communications. Through her authentic approach, longstanding media relationships, creative mindset, and ability to spot and stay on top of trends, she has helped countless clients in the lifestyle industries see tangible results. Recent media placements include outlets such as the New York Times, People, NPR, Forbes, Travel + Leisure, InStyle, Oprah Magazine, and Food & Wine, and airtime on national broadcast shows like TODAY Show.

My Top 3 Suggestions to Get Media Coverage

1) Channel your enthusiasm for the client or your business into an informative, yet succinct pitch that gives a specific idea of how and why the story is relevant and a fit for the writers’ interests and beat. Let them know what sort of an impact it’s having on the industry or market and why their readership will find it interesting.

Writers know when you’ve done your research and can feel when you believe in what you’re pitching. That energy, even via email can be contagious. Be genuine and authentic in your communication — no one likes to feel like they’re being sold something. Cut out everything that doesn’t make an impact, like all those extra exclamation points.

2) Try to anticipate what media will need beforehand. Invest in a talented photographer in the months before your PR campaign so you can include a link to beautiful, high-resolution photos in your pitch. Decide on specific brand messaging beforehand. Have bios, a brand overview and other elements of a press kit ready to go, so you can share it via a Dropbox link or a link to a Media Center on your clients’ website that serves the same purpose. Offer to set up interviews or send more information. Anything you can do to make the process easier, the better.

3) Share coverage on social media as much as possible, and ask that clients do the same. Some writers have even started requesting tags and mentions when coverage goes live. As media continues to making a significant shift to digital, social media has become an avenue to not only thank writers for their work on a piece, but to put more eyes on the coverage itself. Although most won’t come out and say it, writers can give preferential treatment to those who promote on social media, as they remember who went above and beyond.

Your Unfinished Business Public Relations and Marketing

My PR Background

We offer a blend of services in the hospitality, retail, entertainment sectors with emphasis on start-ups and working with seasoned companies who are seeking creative new edge to their business.

My Top 3 Suggestions to Get Media Coverage

1- Be humble and kind. If there is one thing I have learned and witnessed first hand, is if you it becomes about you and not your client then all is lost. There is nothing worse than seeing a publicist all over in clients photo opps this is their time to shine not yours.

2- Pitch on target~ meaning know the audience you are pitching to . You’re not going to pitch an outlet in the middle of a blizzard if your client has nothing to offer the news outlet if it does not pertain to what is happening in the climate at the time of your pitch.

3- Be specific when working with writers, give them all the information they will need so they have every piece of information possible , such as location, phone numbers, website etc.

4- Don’t be a nudge! Of course followup within a reasonable period of time is reasonable. Our business is based on relationships and they are built over time and with trust.

5- Always write a Thank You note, while this might seem odd I write every person I have worked with a very simple note saying Thank you. They will never forget it. .

Kim Livengood, Chief Communications Officer, The Eclipse Agency

My PR Background

At the age of 3, I had already published my own magazine. While The Alexander Times only had a circulation of 2 (thanks mom and dad!), it set the foundation for my career. As a lover of writing, reading and making friends, my career has come full circle to the things I enjoy most: being creative and building authentic relationships.

My Top 3 Suggestions to Get Media Coverage

1. Think like a Matchmaker. You aren’t going to set up your best friend with a guy who wants to live in the county when she wants to be in a big city. So why would you pitch an editor something they aren’t interested in? Don’t pitch a beauty product to a sports writer or a political policy to a travel editor. Be smart, do your research, and be relevant.

2. Online Stalking is Okay! Follow the writers you want to pitch on their social media platforms. Learn their interests and their tone. Engage with them in an authentic manner. Build the relationship so when you do pitch them, they might recognize your name. And obviously, read what they write.

3. Follow Through and be Gracious. If you are lucky enough to get a writer to respond to you, answer immediately. You may set boundaries with clients and only work with them during business hours, but the media is 24 hours a day, seven days a week. If they have questions, don’t wait to respond. If you do, they will move on. Be appreciative of their time and consideration for your pitch. If your client gets covered, a hand written thank you note goes a long way. It’s all about building authentic relationships with the media. Help them so they will want to work with you again and again. Remember what your mother taught you: treat others like you want to be treated.

Omari Evans, PR Executive, G&S Business Communications

My PR Background

Omari Evans is a public relations executive for G&S Business Communications. After a two year stint garnering publicity for entertainment and sports celebrities, he currently provides strategic communication services for Fortune 500 companies in the B2B and B2C space. Find him on Instagram & Twitter: @omarityee.

My Top 3 Suggestions to Get Media Coverage

Develop Genuine Media Relationships:

Writing an engaging pitch is one way to entice media to cover your client’s story — but nothing beats personally knowing a journalist that may be interested. One way to develop media relationships is by joining professional journalism organizations and attending their networking events. Once a relationship is made, don’t jump the gun and ask them to cover your client — Play the long game and look for ways you can provide value to their lives and their work. That may translate to promoting their articles on social media, helping them on personal projects…or by just being a friend.

Give Them What They Want…Then Follow-Up:

Garner a journalist’s interest by reaching out to them with a story they might actually want to write about. Find out if you have a chance of piquing their interest by doing your research. Read their articles, watch their shows, listen to their podcasts, follow their Twitter, and etc. Send them a succinct pitch that makes it clear how your client’s story is in synch with what their currently covering. At the same time, journalists are often busy and may overlook your initial pitch, so don’t be afraid to keep e-mailing and calling (just shy of being obnoxious).

Think Strategically:

Not all press is a good press in my opinion, even more so when negative coverage can result in your client losing money in real time. Learn when to turn down a media opportunity by doing thorough research on the outlet and journalist expressing interest. As well, when developing media outreach strategy, focus your sights on outlets that can provide real value to your clients and can help them reach their goals/objectives.

Jessica Kill, Partner/President, Popular Press Media Group (PPMG)

My PR Background

Jessica Kill, with a background in finance and production, partnered with Michelle Czernin von Chudenitz in Popular Press Media Group (PPMG) in 2011. During her tenure she and Michelle have led over 100 campaigns for globally recognized clients including Oscar nominee Evgeny Afineevsky (director of Winter On Fire on Netflix), GRAMMY nominee Trevor Guthrie ( This is What it Feels Like with Armin van Buuren), Jean-Claude Van Damme’s international press tour for Amazon’s Jean-Claude Van Johnson , NBC’s Biggest Loser winner Rachel Frederickson and the controversial music video Lavender by Snoop Dogg directed by Jesse Wellens.

My Top 3 Suggestions to Get Media Coverage

Our top 3 tips for securing media coverage are RELATIONSHIP, RELATIONSHIP, RELATIONSHIP. The world is bombarded by so much noise what makes the difference is the ability to connect and build a relationship with the media outlet/reporter/writer.

Three of the ways we are successful with this are;

1.Pick up the phone and call — no one calls anyone anymore. Be the one who does, you will see it makes a difference. If you leave a message, be short and sweet don’t give the whole pitch to get them to call you back I have an exclusive I want to share with you first …

2.Host events — drinking events are easy, however we push our clients to host intimate events that are unique to them where they can build one-on-one relationships in small groups. One client hosts shooting clays events where he teaches media the art and history of shooting.

3.Email each media target individually and personalize it — wire services and mass emails are great for casting a wide net but securing the coverage is made with an individual email that is directed to the specific person. We usually even put their name in the subject line.

Daniel Booth, ENTPR Communications

My PR Background

Daniel Booth is a Entertainment & Sports Publicist based in London. He works with leading pro athletes, musicians and record labels.

My Top 3 Suggestions to Get Media Coverage

1) Keep on top of what’s being covered in the news, it’s surprising how many publicist I meet who don’t read the news or care about it. Also lose the gimmicks and cheesiness it just annoys journalists most of the time, give them something feasible and interesting based around actual facts. 2) Try and build real relationships with journalists, they’re busy but it’s not impossible. Just get to know them, their likes, dislikes, hobbies, you can find it all out via email conversations which may be easier, as it gives the individual the time to come back to you when they have time. Maybe over coffee? Even if you have to schedule it for a weekend, it always makes coverage better. Your pitches will be more personalised to them and their specific interests. 3) For god sake stop copy and pasting! As PR professionals we get blasted by journalists online about our laziness. The amount of times I’ve read dear PR, my names not Alice and I don’t work for X magazine, please stop mass mailing on Twitter is too many to count. You’re doing yourself no favours, the little time it takes to personalise an email is the difference between good coverage and no coverage. That and you stop yourself looking like a complete amateur to someone you’re no doubt going to be pitching frequently.

Phoenix Jackson, Chief Experience Officer, Phoenix Affect Inc.

My PR Background

Phoenix Jackson is an award-winning social entrepreneur, lecturer, and speaker turned author of the book The Spirit of Business. Additionally, Phoenix is the CEO of Phoenix Affect, an integrated communications, PR, and brand management firm. She has worked with many businesses, nonprofits, professional athletes, entertainers, authors, speakers and the like.

My Top 3 Suggestions to Get Media Coverage

1) Build a strong relationship (if possible) with a Producer or a prominent team member. Find and relate with someone who can be a liason for your business and who can control the pitch to their media outlet. Let others fish for you.

2) What has worked for my clients is creating socially relevant dialogue. Does your product or service relate to what is going on socially? Can it be bridged with an endeavor that positively impacts others?

3) IMAGE IS EVERYTHING! Ensure everything from their social profiles, to marketing collateral and the press kit are all consistent and designed with high quality. This helps the person or brand stand out automatically.

Beth Feldman, Partner, Beyond PR Group

My PR Background

Beth Feldman has more than 20 years of experience overseeing consumer, entertainment, lifestyle and tech public relations, and marketing campaigns on behalf of major television networks, leading digital brands and best-selling authors. Feldman is the co-founder of Beyond PR Group, a full service public relations agency specializing in lifestyle and consumer publicity. Additionally, she is a pioneer in the parenting blogosphere as the founder of Role Mommy, an online community, events company and blog network which connects influencers with major brand opportunities and entertainment experiences. Previously, Feldman served as Vice President for CBS Communications where she spearheaded campaigns on behalf of the entertainment, marketing and consumer products divisions.

My Top 3 Suggestions to Get Media Coverage

1. Think like a journalist — Identify news stories or seasonal topics that could integrate your client and pitch those media outlets. Craft a targeted pitch that would resonate specifically with their readers or viewers.

2. Share your sizzle reel: If you’re interested in securing broadcast coverage, always include a link to your client’s media reel or most recent broadcast appearances. Additionally, provide specific segment ideas or tips your client can share either on air or in print.

3. Always be available. You may pitch a producer dozens of times and then finally, they email you back but need you the next day for a demo segment. Clear your schedule and make yourself available. Once you meet the producer in person and if they like you, you will get the revolving door treatment and get invited back again and again.

MarieDriven, Managing Partner, Playbook Media group

My PR Background

Celebrity publicist Marie Driven Theodore is a recognized player on the entertainment scene. She represents what it means to have a pulse on popular culture while also narrowing in on establishing a presence in emerging markets. Marie is known for her role as a liaison for Caribbean talent, from mainstream to niche categories she manages a base of support and operations for her clients through strategic relationship building.

My Top 3 Suggestions to Get Media Coverage

One of my effective ways to gain an editor attention is to have a eye catching headline. Editors receive tons of emails everyday you have to be mindful and pay attention to what they like to write about in the media. My second way of gaining an editors attention is to understand their brand. Do your research to understand what they like to cover. I normally try to give an editor a story that will gain them readership. The Thrid way to gain an editors eyeball is introduce yourself without selling a client. They would appreciate the introduction and keep you in mind when you decide you have a story that makesense.

Heather Logrippo, Founder and President, Expose Yourself PR

My PR Background

Heather founded Expose Yourself PR in 2011, after demand required she opened her own PR firm. Before EYPR, Heather helped grow a $1,000,000 company into a $500,000,000 company as the director of their sales force. Heather now focuses on developing her smart, scrappy, strategic agency with her comprehensive knowledge of digital and print advertising; SEO, geo-fencing, geo- targeting, and social media.

My Top 3 Suggestions to Get Media Coverage

There are a few key rules I follow when it comes to media relations, and all are governed by the idea that journalists want to interact with real people with real (and intelligent) opportunities. Instead of writing an 800-word manifesto on your latest launch, write 50 on how it’s relevant to that specific person; instead of sending the same note to everyone, personalize and add in a bit of humor to brighten up their day!

Here are my three simple rules:

1)Treat your subject line like their headline. How can you grab attention and engage the reader immediately? With a joke? With fear tactics? With a thought provoking question? Think about how you want your content to be perceived and write a headline that speaks to that; then, use it as your subject line.

2)Treat your journalists like people. Surprise! Journalists and PR people are humans too! We need to remember that. People want to be spoken to like people, not automated response machines. If you know the journalist, add some warmth or silliness to your note; if you don’t, maybe send an introductory email before the pitch. Give them one line on each of your clients that immediately makes your clients relevant to them.

3)Treat yourself right. All too often, journalists and/or clients request or say something that is unprofessional or is not in alignment with your moral code. If someone speaks down to you or asks you to do something beyond what could ever be considered normal, stand up for yourself as a professional, in a professional way. Reasserting yourself as another professional will, more often than not, allow you to gain respect with the other party.

Bridget Forney, Vice President, PROFILES

My PR Background

Bridget is the Vice President at PROFILES, a strategic marketing, communications and events firm based in Baltimore, Md. A long-time editorial technologist and public relations specialist, her work with local, regional and national media has led to placements for clients in The Baltimore Sun, Moneyish, The Baltimore Business Journal, Harvard Business Review, The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, The Today Show and more. Her compelling PR and digital work earned her recognition from the Public Relations Society of America as New Professional of the Year in 2010; PR News as a Rising PR Star in 2016; The Daily Record as one of Maryland’s Top 20 in Their Twenties and a 2017 Leading Woman.

My Top 3 Suggestions to Get Media Coverage

Hack your own pitch data. To secure good media coverage, you have to know what you’ve done, where you’ve been and which story angles you’ve been successful with (or not) every time you reach out to media. Keep a pitch-tracking spreadsheet to easily record who has responded to you, who hasn’t and what your average response rate is for each pitch. You can then compare response rates from pitch to pitch and easily see which news or announcement performed best for you over the span of a month or year — those are tangible results from outreach that you can use when pitching the same contacts or news in the future. Hacking into the data that we create on our own every day at the most basic levels can offer a macro look at PR efforts and help optimize everything you do to get the best media coverage.

Spend five minutes on HARO every day. Help a Reporter Out, or HARO, is a longtime, free tool PR professionals use to see what stories media contacts are working on, and what articles, segments and blog posts they’re trying to find sources or subject matter experts for. However, if you’re not careful, you can fall into a rabbit hole and spend hours mining inquiries with nothing to show for it. HARO is a great tool, but as with most PR tools, it’s only as good as its user. Don’t spend more than five minutes on HARO every day. By forcing yourself to review these emails under a time constraint, you’ll learn how to pick out relevant inquiries quickly and not waste valuable time reading hundreds of posts looking for a needle in a haystack.

Tell your CSR story. Companies can be timid to promote the good things they’re doing in the community for fear it will be perceived as disingenuous (or doing the right thing for the wrong reasons). However, doing good business is doing good PR. When shared smartly and humbly, showcasing corporate social responsibility (CSR) efforts can help raise awareness about what your brand is giving back to the community and get more people to support your cause(s). Not to mention, media are almost always eager to share stories of goodwill and it helps customers know that the company they’re buying from or working with shares their values and isn’t just about profit and growth.

Jackie Berlowski, CEO & Founder of GreatHerGood

My PR Background

Jackie, the founder of supports modern women in business through her community of influential entrepreneurs and public relations services. As a native New Yorker, Jackie has a diverse background in television production, public relations, celebrity booking, and marketing. Jackie’s expertise, media know-how and passion for entrepreneurs results in major PR power for growing brands.”3 TIPS:

My Top 3 Suggestions to Get Media Coverage

1.) Stick to an Editorial/Content Calendar. It’s all about consistent blogging and social media posts. When you post, think about adding quality vs quantity. Post valuable content that your audience can really benefit from, keep it relevant and post on a consistent basis. If your site, blog or social media hasn’t been touched in ages, some may question if you’re still in business or not. If you’re always adding your expertise and sharing valuable insights, editors are more likely to pick it up.

2.) Do Your Research. If you’re trying to land your own press, this takes serious time and perseverance. What media outlets are on your “”wish-list?”” Does it match up with where future customers may be? Is it best to target online, hard copy mags or TV…maybe all three? Be realistic in terms of what kind of press is right for your business and what can take you to the next level.

3.) Keep It Real. Be who you really are and share it with the world. There is only one YOU. What is your narrative? Does your business give back to a charity? When you share your passion behind your business, it creates trust and brand loyalty. Is your story one that others could relate to or learn from? People want to hear about it! Be frank about your obstacles and share your successes. How did your business change you? Take us on your journey and share your narrative. People can and will relate to THAT more than your products. “

Jennifer Buonantony

My PR Background

Jennifer Buonantony has more than fifteen years of experience working in the entertainment industry in TV & film production, development, talent management and digital media & public relations. She is the CEO of Press Pass LA, an entertainment news site and PR & Digital agency. Jennifer graduated Summa Cum Laude from the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University

My Top 3 Suggestions to Get Media Coverage

1) Build relationships with reporters. Put yourself in the reporter’s shoes. Think about what they need to craft a compelling story and only pitch them clients that make sense for their beat. Reporters often write for multiple outlets or change jobs. Following them on Twitter will help you keep up to date with their current coverage. Make it easy for them by giving them all the assets- links, images, talking points- they need.

2) Follow up! Reporters are very busy. Don’t just send one email and disappear. Be sure to follow up via email and phone. There is a fine line between being pushy and being helpful. Learn this balance and whenever you can, meet them in person to solidify the relationship. Everyone has time for a coffee!

3) Train your clients. Set clear expectations with them about best practices for speaking with the media. Hold a face to face media training so that they understand how best to clearly and concisely convey their story while providing the reporter the information that is most relevant to their piece. This also helps the client get comfortable speaking about him/herself or their company whether it’s on the phone, Skype, or in studio.

Karine Delage,owner, Karyzma Agency

Alexandre Paskanoi

My PR Background

Every day, I have the privilege of working with A-list talents, artists, and renowned brands. My experience has allowed me to delve into industries as diverse as Fashion, Food & Beverage, Healthcare, Music, Film, Lifestyle, Media and Technology. And whether as a PR specialist, a Publicist, Project Manager, or Event Planner, I see my task with singular clarity: to help my clients do great things and build their brands. Just this year, I was honored to be named a recipient of the 2017 Top 40 Under 40 award.

My Top 3 Suggestions to Get Media Coverage

When you want great media coverage you need to be creative in your approach and make sure that you are on point with your pitch.

1-Know your market & Target; often publicist won’t target the right media and just send a general pitch to everyone in their database which is a major mistake. You need to be specific at all time and you will see an increase in coverage. Take the time to get everything ready before writing the email and press sent this one you save yourself tons of time.

2-Think outside the box, explore every avenue you can think about but your clients. I know this can be a tired task but can bring a new audition. For example one of my client is a Top 5 artists in Canada and we got him to do a piece about his condo in downtown Toronto and it got a great response.

3-Do not harass the media’s if they say no to you once, you can pitch another angle but if they say no again that’s it. They use publicist get tons of emails and calls per day and last thing they need is a publicist calling them a million time.

Aaron Crisler / Owner / Conduit Media

My PR Background

Conduit Media Solutions provides publicity, social media, and marketing services to achieve maximum results for a diverse set of clientele — including Delilah, Jason Crabb, the Scott Brothers (Stars of HGTV’s Property Brothers,) Neal McCoy, Loretta Lynn, Don Moen, Water Tower Records, Lincoln Memorial Easter Sunrise Service, The Bridge Ministry, Kelly Wright (Fox News), Inspire Nashville / Possibilities, Inc. / Onsite, and many others.

With a commitment to excellence, Conduit Media Solutions seeks to execute the highest level of service in traditional and new media platforms, engaging audiences and creating relevance. We maximize the moment and garner press for our clients.

Aaron Crisler, born and raised in the small town of Austell, GA, has two decades of experience in the entertainment industry. Crisler moved to Nashville, TN in 2005 and began as a photographer, quickly gaining trust in the industry working countless celebrity events, red carpet and award ceremonies in Nashville, Los Angeles, and New York.

Crisler stumbled into public relations, documenting a client in the studio when they were notified of their project being selected as a GRAMMY® Nominee. Crisler asked the client if they had a publicist to work the carpet, they replied: NO! We didn’t even think about that! Who should we get? Me, replied Crisler. Crisler accompanied the artist on the GRAMMY® red carpet — his first duty as a publicist. The rest, as they say, is history.

Crisler serves his clients with integrity, excellence, and attention to detail.

Crisler serves on the Board of Directors for Delilah’s Point Hope Charity, the board of Jason Crabb Ministries and volunteers with The Bridge Ministry and Proverbs 12:10 Animal Rescue, among others. He is a frequent guest speaker at universities and workshops, and was named one of Nashville Business Journal’s 40 Under 40 in 2017.

My Top 3 Suggestions to Get Media Coverage

1. Make sure it’s a story or find that angle to make it a story. Be honest with yourself and your client — you know when something is likely to catch the attention of a journalist and when it won’t. Make sure this story/angle is clean, simple and to the point — attention spans are short these days. If it catches the eye/ear of the journalist, you will have the opportunity to expound further.

2. Get to know as much as possible about the journalist and outlet that you are pitching and truly care about them — but don’t fake it. Try to get to know someone before you pitch them. Be genuine and authentic in your outreach. Most everyone is overworked and everyone is just trying to get through the day and make the world a better place, so remember to be kind. You never know what that person is dealing with in their personal lives.

3. I live and work by what I call the ASK PRINCIPLE: Ask, Seek, Knock — and keep on, and repeat, etc. — and the door will be opened! Unless you are pitching a MAJOR celeb, etc. you’re going to have to be very persistent. Learn to take NO for an answer, but then move on to the next and then the next, until one of those doors opens for your client.

Megan Driscoll, Founder & CEO of EvolveMKD

My PR Background

Megan Driscoll has 16 years of experience in health care marketing and communications, and has cultivated relationships with physicians, consumers, and key opinion leaders to leverage national coverage and maximum exposure for Evolve’s clients. In three years, Megan’s transformed her business from a small office in her apartment to a full-service firm in NYC (double digit growth in revenue — $5.1 million last year, in the number of clients served, and in staff size). Clients include Merz North America, Lia Diagnostics, MD Complete, HydraFacial, ISDIN, and PhotonMD.

My Top 3 Suggestions to Get Media Coverage

Know what you want to say. Media outlets are always looking for hard news or trend pieces. You want your message to be important and communicate an element of hard news in order to grab their attention. What you have to say breaks new ground, changes the game, or alters perceptions. Offer a unique perspective.

Be real. Those two words say it all. Bring yourself to the story. People don’t want to read a dry press release or watch a professor teaching a science lesson. They want to connect with what they are reading or seeing. When you are in a room with a group of friendly faces, you connect with them directly on a human level. Bring some of that to the story you want told. It will draw a reporter’s attention.

Most importantly, be timely. All journalists work on a deadline, so find out what their deadline is and set a time to contact them. Make sure you call them or are available at the agreed time.

Natalie Glaser, Media Coordinator, M Booth

My PR Background

Natalie Glaser works with premium lifestyle clients across the food and drink sector at M Booth. Natalie is a media maven, always thinking of the next big idea and seeing her pitches come to fruition in top national, regional, and lifestyle publications.

My Top 3 Suggestions to Get Media Coverage

1)Slide into the DMs: If you’re pitching a social media editor, or even just a younger editor in general, it’s probably best to pitch them on Instagram, Twitter or even LinkedIn. After all, that’s what they’re on most of the day. Your DM should be the equivalent of a 2 am you up? text: short and to the point.

2)Keep It 100: This should be taken literally and figuratively. Be 100% yourself, and also keep it to 100 characters or less.

3)Save the Fluff for Your Sandwich: You don’t want to send that super long, overtly descriptive email and guess what? No one wants to read it either!

Alli Williams, PR Manager, Amplify Relations

My PR Background

Alli Williams is an innovative, scrappy go-getter with a flair for strategic communications and a passion for brunch. Alli has worked in brand creation and reputation management for over four years. She specializes in media relations, content creation and SEO optimization.

My Top 3 Suggestions to Get Media Coverage

1.Building relationships with journalists is important. Understand the media relations is a give-and-take relationship. As PR people, we must build that foundation with journalists rather than simply relying on them to help up when we need them to. When you foster a working relationship together, you will have a better chance at creating a win-win scenario in which both parties are helping to fulfil each other’s goals. Don’t only reach out to a reporter when you need something from them, work on establishing a partnership.

2.Original content is the key to developing an interesting brand. If your pitch is canned and general, odds are it will just be brushed aside and won’t get picked up in the media. The key to getting good media coverage is finding an angle that is fresh and new. Find your client’s or company’s uniqueness in your market and you will find your edge to creating interesting, one-of-a-kind content that you can pitch to the media.

3.Don’t focus on your failures, learn from them. Know that your pitch will not be picked up 100% of the time, and that’s okay! It can take some trial and error to find out how to best pitch your client or company. The important take-away is to discover what works and what doesn’t so that you can learn from your downfalls and continue on to succeed down the road.

Lee Regal, Account Director, DiGennaro Communications

My PR Background

Lee Regal is an experienced PR and media professional with a background in writing and blogging and a track record for developing fresh strategies to increase client visibility. Lee is currently an account director at DiGennaro Communications, where he focuses on b2b clients in the ad tech and media spaces.

My Top 3 Suggestions to Get Media Coverage

1: Build Relationships — In our fast-paced, always-on media landscape, standing out is difficult. You can have a perfect pitch and be overlooked by a reporter because of the sheer amount of emails flooding their inboxes. A great way to cut through the clutter is to build strong relationships with reporters. Whether that’s over email, on social media, or taking them out for coffee, reporters remember the publicists that treat them like actual people, not just a means to an end.

2: Refine Your Pitch — I’ve seen a lot of people rush pitches out the door, without giving them the proper time and thought. Remember, every time you send a pitch out, your reputation is at stake. The more pitches you send out that have weak angles, or are off-topic for a particular reporter, the more they’ll begin to roll their eyes when they see your name pop up in their inbox. Take the time to craft compelling pitches with narratives and talk about them with your colleagues for a temperature check, so that when you hit send, you can confidently say you’ve given the reporter something they can sink their teeth into.

3: Read the News — Reaching out to reporters without reading the news each day is akin to trying to hit a baseball blindfolded. Yes, you’ll hit sometimes, but it’s not a way to succeed on a consistent basis. Outside of the importance of knowing what is going on in the world around you or knowing a recent article that a reporter just wrote, reading the news helps spark creative ideas for timely pitches that you’d otherwise never come up with. Ask any great PR practitioner the keys to success, and reading the news will always find itself near the top of the list.

Kate Lobel, Director of Public Relations

My PR Background

Kate Lobel is the Director of Public Relations at Power Digital Marketing in San Diego, California. She understands the importance of having a close-knit relationship between SEO and PR and leverages her outreach ability to secure crafted and pointed placements which in turn increase both brand awareness and SEO rankings. She’s gained extensive international media relations experience with a passion for the health and wellness industry.

My Top 3 Suggestions to Get Media Coverage

My first tip to getting great media coverage is outlining your promotional strategy to the editor; even in the initial pitch! It can read something like, Hey xx, here’s my general pitch… Oh and also, I confirmed with x brand’s social team that they want to promote the article through their Facebook ads with a $500 spend, also they want to mention you in their PPC review extensions. To top it off, you will be included on their website with a link pointing back to your article. The virality and success of a post is often how editors are valued. Knowing this, make sure that you have a promotion strategy ready to share with the editor and execute on it to get that hit!

My second tip would be, stand out. Publicists have their tactics, like piggybacking off of a timely topic or sharing something that is unique about the product. This type of pitching is already an expectation, so if you are trying to get an editor to cover you, offer them what they would never expect! Some ideas might be: edgy commentary that goes against the industry status quo, a personalized media drop with the product made for them in particular or an exclusive to only that pub!

My third tip would be to look into the site metrics of the outlet you are pursuing. When you ask me for a tip about how to get good, media coverage, my initial thought is, how impactful is this outlet to my audience and is the site increasing in rankings? Sometimes, I see more traffic and first click conversions coming from a niche blogs than even the New York Times. I know this, because I look at google analytics and identify which placements are actually good for my client based on the agreed upon KPIs before the campaign began.

Kayla Rose, CEO, The PR Rose, LLC.

My PR Background

Hi my name is Kayla Rose and I am a Publicist and Talent Manager. My passion driven agency services entrepreneurs, influencers, and brands in fashion, beauty, lifestyle, and entertainment. Specializing in digital placement, our fresh approach to modern media has landed clients on the HARRY Show, Cheddar TV, and in Forbes, Fast Company, POPSUGAR, HelloBeautiful and other popular media outlets.

My Top 3 Suggestions to Get Media Coverage

1. Make GENUINE connections with the media personnel– Introducing yourself to editors and getting an understanding of what they are looking for is the perfect way to start a great working relationship. Editors are real people who get thousands of emails daily and its better to see a familiar name who they know is only going to reach out with pitches that are relevant to what they write about. I like to send out an introductory email and if I know an editor is in my area invite them out for drinks before I pitch a new contact — they may not always answer but I feel it’s best to say hello!

2. Tell a new story or tell your story in a unique way — The more creative your subject line and pitch are the better chance of an editor moving forward with your story. If you have a story or products that has been on the market before lead with what makes you and your product unique.

3. Maximize on the Press you do receive — When an editor writes about you and/or your company make sure to thank them and then blast it everywhere! Put it on social media, put it on your website, and send it out to your newsletter. It not only shows your appreciation of the editor for but it also builds your credibility in your industry.

Kayla Codina, Media Relations Strategist, M Booth

My PR Background

Kayla Codina is a Media Relations Strategist with over six years of experience at two mid-size agencies in the tri-state area. Her personal obsession with media has allowed her to carve her professional path in PR, that’s led to eclectic adventures across a multitude of verticals, including: food & drink, travel, fashion, tech, home, celebrity, sports, music and much more.

My Top 3 Suggestions to Get Media Coverage

Investigate a reporter’s tonality through their personality and lean into it — are they a millennial who gets overly excited about the Kardashian’s or are they a hard news reading economic expert? Maybe they’re a sarcastic joke maker and thus, you can be too! Toss a little wit or banter into your emails if the media member’s personality warrants it, or fan girl a bit with extra exclamation points if you find that their Tweets encompass a similarly enthusiastic tone. BUT, don’t say it if you don’t mean it and only lean into THEIR tonality if it feels natural for YOUR personality — in-authenticity is unmistakable.

If you’re a junior to mid-level staffer, what do you have in common with almost any member of the media? You both have bosses. Everyone has sympathy for the (wo)man who isn’t perched atop the totem pole and is at the mercy of those who are. Open up and be transparent with the writer about that commonality when the pressure is on from the powers that be to place something, correct something, offer or retract something, etc. — we all report to someone and sometimes, we need to stick together.

Don’t just be a resource, be the most accommodating, organized, accessible, forward thinking resource you can be. Don’t wait for the writer to ask you for photos, prices, links, etc. — know what it will take to build their story and have the assets ready at the helm. AND when you do give them those assets, don’t just plop them into an email! Construct them clearly, label each asset and present them in a way that is handy to the reporter, who is no doubt flipping through a hundred emails a minute and has no time to dig for your hi res images.

Erin Lumley, Partner, Ingrid Marketing

My PR Background

Erin Lumley is a partner at Ingrid Marketing, with more than 20 years of PR experience. Her team recently won an Hermes Platinum Award and Erin represents top cannabis companies in the market.

My Top 3 Suggestions to Get Media Coverage

Do research — know your reporter. Did you know that the average reporter gets anywhere from 300 to 500 emails a day? They often have to cover a wide variety of beats, or markets. Before you pick up the phone or send that email, do some research. Read their past articles, look on LinkedIn or Google and find their bio.

Be relevant. If you are reaching out to reporters, your pitch should answer two things: why now, and would this publication’s readers care? It’s important to know your audience in order to increase your chances of getting coverage.

Don’t waste their time. If a reporter comes back to you and requests information or offers a meeting time, respond promptly. Like we said, they get a ton of emails and right now you are top of mind. So answer their questions quickly and succinctly and, if you tell them you are going to send them information, do it immediately.

Sawyer Armstrong, Senior Account Executive, Green Olive Media

My PR Background

Hailing from New York, Sawyer is a dynamic public relations professional based in Atlanta, Ga. with six years of experience strategically positioning clients for success with strengths in event planning, earned editorial placement, forging key relationships and building interest across market communities. She effectively executes high-profile projects, strategically entices and entertains influencers, creates brand ambassadors, secures VIP events, promotions, and impactful earned editorial placement, and ultimately increases customer frequency. Specializing in food and beverage communications, Sawyer works in markets nationwide with a client roster including Chicken + Beer by Chris ‘Ludacris’ Bridges and James Beard award winning Jackmont Hospitality group, Grain & Barrel Spirits, Holler & Dash — a subsidiary of Cracker Barrel, Salata (with more than 70 corporate-owned and franchised locations across the country), and the award winning 10 Apart Hospitality group in Atlanta (The Mercury, The Pinewood, Bar Americano, Bar Crema, Deep End and PROOF Cocktail Syrups).

My Top 3 Suggestions to Get Media Coverage

1. More often than not, people are more captivating in person than on the page. So publicists, get off the page and go be in person. Take the writers, editors and producers out to lunch, to happy hours and to dinner. Go to the industry events, show up at the parties and invite them to your events. Follow up with a phone call instead of another email. Check in on birthdays, professional and personal milestones, times of illness and common interests. Today, we are so often behind screens that it’s vital to build relationships in a genuine and humanizing way so that when the media calls for content, you are the person they think of — as opposed to another publicist who might only be thought of as a familiar email address.

2. Junior publicists and interns often ask me which PR industry books I would recommend: I don’t. Stop reading about the industry, and get in the industry. Be a media sponge. It’s important to present the unique value proposition of my clients as opposed to competitors in their industry, so I’m constantly absorbing media: websites, magazines, newspapers, tv shows, radio shows, etc. — all of it. I need to understand what’s being said about the competition, how it’s being said, and to whom it’s being said. What sort of press are the competitors gaining? Who are the thought leaders and who are the industry titans? How can I strategically and creatively position my clients as press-worthy based on those findings? Soak in as much media as possible in order to draw conclusions that lead to results driven press strategies.

3. Writers are not to be used and abused — their job is on the line too, so in order to win allies and achieve press publicists should think like journalists. If I, as a journalist, received this pitch, would it make compelling editorial for the readers of this magazine? Would I take it to my editor? Would I be proud to see it published and put it in my portfolio? A restaurant roundup of asparagus dishes for National Asparagus Day will never make it to the magazine. A day in the life of the CEO and Co-Founder of one of the fastest growing small franchise chains — 100%.

Amy Littleton, Chief Results Officer, KemperLesnik

My PR Background

Amy leads the public relations and content businesses at KemperLesnik. She is a communications strategist, crisis and reputation counselor and business manager. From her days at General Mills planning media tours with the U.S. Women’s Olympic Hockey Team to working in the Business Marketing and Technology Practice at Edelman and running her own agency, Amy has used curiosity and passion to drive results.

My Top 3 Suggestions to Get Media Coverage

1.Don’t be lazy. Use proper grammar. Journalists have spent their careers mastering language. Show respect for them and competence in yourself through well-written and well-spoken content. Your pitch will be more convincing and the reporter will be more likely to pay attention.

2.Back to basics, people. Know your audience. Media relations is not about quantity, it’s about quality. One major hit could be worth dozens of smaller ones. Figure out which outlets to target, then do your homework to find the right reporter to target. Good story pitch + right reporter = success.

3.Some other pros on here have said that relationships don’t matter. That is simply not true. While there are few celebrity and single beat journalists anymore, all journalists come to rely on a cadre of PR pros and sources for their stories. People want to do business with people they like. Be intelligent about how you work with journalists. Put yourself in their shoes. Set Google alerts to track their stories and reach out when something strikes you. And, if you can meet in person, if even for coffee, do it.

Elizabeth Conway, Executive Director of Corporate Communications, Clique

My PR Background

Elizabeth Conway is the executive director of corporate communications for Clique, a media, marketing, and consumer brands company named to Fast Company’s Most Innovative Companies list in 2017. Clique is the parent company of leading content properties Who What Wear (fashion), MyDomaine (lifestyle), Byrdie (beauty), Obsessee (a social-only network for Gen Z girls), THE/THIRTY (wellness), and College Fashionista (a higher-education community for content creators). In addition to its content sites, Clique has an internal consumer products division, which includes the successful Who What Wear apparel collection and recently launched activewear line JoyLab, both sold exclusively at Target stores nationwide. Conway’s core responsibilities include public relations, media relations, and promotion of the company’s executive office and brands through thought leadership and earned press initiatives.

My Top 3 Suggestions to Get Media Coverage


I’ve found one of the best recipes for success is setting up informational meetings between the spokesperson you’re representing and relevant reporters. They all start out on background so that we’re able to talk about upcoming initiatives for the company and the representative. This proves to be even more helpful ahead of a big exclusive or embargoed announcement, giving you a sense of who would be most interested in the news as well as building a sense of mutual trust between both parties.


When working on messaging before an interview, know the outcome your representative is looking for. Make sure you’re reiterating key points as well as planning for various scenarios around questions they may be asked. To do this, you have to not only understand what the story is but also do your due diligence and research the types of quotes and callouts the reporter has used in their recent pieces. It really is true that practice makes perfect when it comes to interviews, but most importantly, practice will protect your representative’s brand.


Ultimately, if you don’t have a passionate, well-versed spokesperson, you’re toast as a publicist or PR person. I’m lucky enough to represent a whip-smart visionary, so her ability to outperform in an interview is never in question; however, even though she’s great in an interview, preparing her to the best of my abilities and doing the necessary research sets her and the brand up for success. If you represent someone who is not as experienced with speaking to the press, media-train and practice over and over until all parties — especially you (the publicist) — are comfortable.

Sanah Sadaruddin, Founder and CEO, Creative Grammar

My PR Background

After ten years of working in PR on clients like Citibank during Occupy Wall Street and Shell Oil & Gas during the energy market crash, Sanah left the big agency world and created Creative Grammar — bringing the subscription based model to the PR world.

Creative Grammar helps small business owners, startups, entrepreneurs and anyone with a side hustle learn how to create their own communications strategy integrating elements of public relations and marketing communications — one topic, one month at a time. Each month for $30, subscribers receive 8 unique pitch ideas, a textbook of PR knowledge and library of resources and templates used by Fortune 500 companies to implement for their own strategy.

My Top 3 Suggestions to Get Media Coverage

1) Be smart in your approach — Over the years, I’ve had great media pitching successes from the front page of LA Times to a feature on USA Today and Fast Company. Even some amazing local wins! I’ve also had some complete failures, too. What I’ve learned is that the key to success is finding that one reporter who is really going to value the story you’ve got to offer versus churning out the same pitch or press release to a long and generic list of media contacts. It’s all about having a targeted outreach approach to start building real, authentic relationships.

2) Be smart with your time — PR people can spend hours crafting the so-called perfect pitch only to have it fall flat with no media response. Guilty (and not to mention heartbroken!). There’s really no guarantee that a journalist is going to pick up your story idea — no matter how great it is. Given the nature of the beast, the best pitch is one that is crafted in under ten minutes. This way, no matter the outcome, at least you only spent ten minutes, can revise and try again.

3) Be smart with your first impression, aka your subject line — First impressions matter and that’s true with your pitches, too. Since you will mainly pitch media through email, your first impression is the subject line, and if it sucks, reporters won’t click it to read more which is a sure way to NOT get good coverage. In summary, don’t make your subject line an afterthought but word it as the headline of the article.

To be smart and self-sufficient in PR, Creative Grammar offers a monthly guide to teach ANYONE how to do PR including how to pitch media and creating the perfect pitch in under ten minutes. Hope you consider me for your post!

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