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Business - How to Build it Using the Media

Have you ever noticed that when someone is interviewed onradio, television or in the newspapers about a particularsubject, it tends to be the same people? You may even besaying - "Why don't they ever ask me?"

Well the reason is - they don't know about you. If they didknow that you were an expert on a particular subject, thenthere's a good chance you'll be asked from time to time. There are various ways to make yourself known to the media.One way is to write a News Release. Send the media a newsrelease when you want to announce:

A new product or service -

A new marketing campaign -

A new address -

New staff or someone being promoted -

Any other newsworthy information about you, your business oryour people.

Editors, radio and TV producers receive tons of informationfrom individuals and companies trying to get publicity fortheir business. However, they need information that isnewsworthy, relevant and interesting for their audience.

There are guidelines for writing and laying out a newsrelease - if you don't meet these guidelines then yourrelease will probably get dumped immediately.

A News Release needs

A contact person - In the top left-hand corner of the firstpage put the name and telephone number of a person who canprovide further information. If it's your name then okay,but an editor would expect to see someone else's name ratherthan the business owner. If you have an assistant, put theirname or your partner's name - if they work with you.

Date - In the top right-hand corner. You also need to statewhen it can be released, if it's for immediate release then- put those words. You may want it to be released on aparticular date - if so, give the details.

Headline - You need a headline that summarises the story andgrabs the editor's attention. Write what you might expect tosee in the particular publication or hear someone say.

The Body - Write your news release on one page if you can;two pages maximum. Up to 250 words double spaced and amaximum of four paragraphs. Always write in the "thirdperson" not the first. Make your information exciting andhuman, think about what would grab the attention of thereaders. Include a quotation from a customer if you can;for example - Fred Smith, Chief Executive of Apex Softwaresaid - "This is the most exciting new product to beintroduced to our industry this year!"

Here are a few other points to consider when writing a newsrelease:

It's not a sales document - This is news information, it isnot an advertisement. You don't want words like - "Wonderful- Fantastic New Service. If an editor thinks you'rejust trying to get a free advertisement then it'll bedumped.

Think of questions - Be prepared for any questions you mightbe asked if an editor phones for more information; you don'twant to blow it if you get to this stage.

Get a name - Find out the name of the person to send it to,if it's aimed at the business community send it to - JohnBrown, Business Editor, XYZ newspaper. If you can't get thename over the phone then, send it to the Business Editor orthe Lifestyle Editor. You can usually find the name of theperson you want from the latest edition of the publicationyou're sending it to. If it's for radio or TV, phone and ask- "Who should I send this to?"

Media services - There are media distribution servicesthat'll send out your release to all the relevant people -for a fee

PR Company - You could employ a PR company who'll do thewhole News Release for you. They know how to write it andwho to send it to. They'll also have contacts - journalists,TV editors, producers. They can often get you an interviewwith these people.

Here are a couple of books that could be useful:

One Step Ahead: Publicity, Newspapers and Press Releases -by Alison Baverstock

Press Here! Managing the Media for Free Publicity - by AnnieGurton

Discover how you can generate more business without havingto cold call!Alan Fairweather is the author of "How to get More Saleswithout Selling" This book is packed with practical thingsthat you can do to ? get customers to come to you . Click here now

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