Same Time Next Year: Using Editorial Calendars as Part of your PR Efforts
It's the time of year when calendars crowd out the books and magazines in bookstores and are even on sale at reduced prices. But there's a special kind of calendar that all good public relations professionals use ? the editorial calendar.
Using editorial calendars is one of the most effective, yet most overlooked tool in a publicist's toolkit. Most people avoid using editorial calendars because it takes some time to research and compile. The top PR professionals do this every year and I've personally found that outcomes are well worth the time ? especially when you end up getting featured in a key article in a major publication.
Except for the year and the names of the months, these calendars bear little resemblance to the glossy hang-up calendars in the stores. No swimsuit-clad models, lush scenery, puppies, kittens or cartoons of Dilbert. Editorial calendars are usually bare-bones lists of upcoming issue topics and major features ? or at least the cover stories or special sections. Not much to look at ? unless you're a PR pro trying to crack that market.
That's because knowing what publications have in store allows you to tailor your pitches, news releases and articles to particular issues. Helping editors and journalists by providing the stories they need earns you goodwill and increased attention.
Editorial calendars are basically telling you exactly what information they need for each issue. "If you can spin your own story to match what the media is looking for, then you have a great chance of being featured in that publication," she says.
A current editorial calendar can usually be found in the advertising section at the publication's website. If you can't find it there, contact the publications marketing/sales department and ask them to email/snail mail it to you.
Here are some examples of editorial calendars:
? Choice: The Magazine for Professional Coaching - http://www.choice-online.com/calendar.html
? Small Business Technology Magazine - http://www.sbtechnologymagazine.org/write/SBTM_Editorial_Calendar_2004_2005.pdf
? Fortune Small Business - http://www.fortune.com/fortune/mediakit/editcal-targeted.html
Not all publications have editorial calendars. Really small magazines ? the many labor-of-love kind of magazines published by enthusiasts ?usually don't. Magazines, which don't accept ads, may have one but they don't publish it. Totally reader-contributed publications don't. New magazines generally don't because the content is so often changed and tweaked as the publication searches for its voice.
Even some large, national magazines don't have calendars. News weeklies like Time and Newsweek don't. Neither does People or US Weekly. They are steered by what news hits that week and that is, of course, something you can't predict months in advance.
After reviewing the calendar, you can decide which stories you can offer to be a source or expert for, or, in the case of trade publications, which months you could offer a written expert-opinion piece.
Remember that editorial calendars can and do change, so check for updates regularly. Also, pay attention to deadlines. Article queries and pitches especially should be sent to the editors well ahead of time. And if they don't have deadlines, assume that the media need the information about four months out.
Shannon Cherry, APR, MA helps businesses, entrepreneurs and nonprofit organizations to be heard. She's a marketing communications and public relations expert with more than 15 years experience and the owner of Cherry Communications. Subscribe today for Be Heard! a FREE biweekly ezine and get the FREE special report: "Get Set For Success: Creative, Low-Cost Marketing Tips to Help You be Heard." Go to: http://www.cherrycommunications.com/FreeReport.htm
PR: Lets Cut to the Chase
If your key ? that's KEY ? outside audiences don't exhibit the kind of behaviors that lead to results like these, you need to take a closer look at your public relations effort.
Marketing-Minded Financial Planners, Its Not Who You Know But What You Know
Almost every day, I hear the same question, over and over, from motivated, well-meaning financial planners who want to use publicity in their marketing mix. It goes something like this:
A Managers PR Paradigm
If you manage a department, division or subsidiary for a business, non-profit or association, your primary public relations model probably should read this way: people act on their own perception of the facts before them, which leads to predictable behaviors about which something can be done. When we create, change or reinforce that opinion by reaching, persuading and moving-to-desired- action the very people whose behaviors affect the organization the most, the public relations mission is accomplished.
Are You Sure You Know What Youre Doing?
Because when it comes to public relations, non-believers can produce a double-bummer -- missed opportunity AND a ton of wasted money. It really is a shame because we do public relations to change the behaviors of certain groups of people important to the success of those very Doubting Thomases.
Advertising and Community Relations -- Get the Best of Both Worlds
Have you ever noticed that in communities without big universities, high school sports take on an even bigger importance?
Cultivating Positive Media Relationships
Some people think that publicity is all about paparazzi snapping photos of celebs and intruding into their private lives -- or as Woodward and Bernstein blowing the lid off of a government scandal. But, as a small business owner, publicity is actually one of your greatest allies! People who read about you in the newspaper or hear an interview with you on the radio will sit up and take notice -- much more notice than if they simply see a flier of yours posted at the Laundromat. But you have to be in charge of your relationship with the media, and make sure that it is a good one!
Publicity for Financial Planners--Eight Tips For Success
Individual financial planners can outscore bigger competitors and gain market share with publicity. The key to doing it well: don't mimic the big guys and gals. Do it smartly, but on your scale. How? Here are eight rules:
The Working Case Study
Next to white papers, case studies are the most popular tool in the technical marketer's toolkit
Generating Publicity: Will The Media Be Interested In My Product/Business?
When it comes to launching a new business or product, some marketing consultants might say that EVERY product is appropriate for a publicity or media exposure campaign. That is true to a degree, but as a PR/publicity professional and former media person, I would qualify that statement by saying that although new products would benefit from a solid publicity campaign, not all businesses or products and their pitches will grab the attention of the media.
Make Your PR Budget Work Harder
Do it by restructuring your business, non-profit or association public relations program so that it delivers the stakeholder behavior changes you want. Changes that lead directly to achieving your objectives.
Media Relations: Ending the Press Release Crutch
When most people think of media relations, they think of press releases. To be sure, writing and distributing them is one of the most important parts of the job. But press releases may be the most overused tool in the media professional's arsenal to the detriment of other tools that might have greater results.
The Press Pack Is Chasing You - Give Them Room
There's good news for public relations execs, marketingprofessionals and even one-man-band entrepreneurs: journalistsare surfing your sites looking for news.
Getting Free Publicity with Radio Interviews
Imagine that you are a radio producer. You have to fill three hours a day, five days a week, every single week. You need topics that inform, enrage, entertain, educate, motivate, and otherwise engage your audience. How do you find those topics, and the guests to make them come alive?
Marketing-Minded Financial Planners--Appearing on TV? Tell the World!
It doesn't matter how cruel the reality programs get, there always seems to be an endless supply of people willing to humiliate themselves to get on television. There's just something exciting about appearing in front of millions of people.
Franchise Work Vehicles Should Have a Flag on Them
If you own a franchise and have company vehicles, be sure you have a flag on it. First let's discuss the American flag. Franchising is the epitome of the free enterprise system. It's what makes America great. The entire United States government is a franchise system. The federal government grants powers to states to govern exclusive territories. They have the power to tax. They give royalties to the federal government in the form of tax revenue. Each state consists of counties. Again, counties are assigned geographical territories and have certain rights and powers. Each county has cities with charters and taxing authority (limited). Think of it this way: Franchisor = Federal Government; Master Franchisee = States; Regional Directors & Area Reps = Counties; Individual Franchisees = Cities; Customer = The People
What Kind of PR Makes Sense?
For business, non-profit and association managers, is itpublicity that delivers newspaper and talk show mentions backed up by colorful brochures and videos, combined with special events that attract a lot of people?
When Should You Outsource Your PR Efforts?
1) Do you NEED solid, consistant media exposure...week after week, or are you satisfied with "occasional" exposure? Now, this question alone is important... but not enough. The main component of this question is the IMPORTANCE of PR.
Managers: Why Not PR Like This?
I mean public relations that presumes from the get-go that the right message, strategy and communications tactics can change perceptions among each of your business, non- profit or association audiences. And do so in a way that produces the behaviors you need to achieve your objectives.
What Determines PR Success?
As a business, non-profit or association manager, occasions will arise when you'll need to employ tactics like a brochure, a special event or a press release. Butit will be your work that precedes those tactics that will determine the success of your public relations effort.
Cutting Down Your Trade Show Budget
Whenever a recession or volatility threatens the economy, companies immediately look at where they can cut budgets. Without much forethought, the first to hit the block is inevitably training, followed closely behind by marketing. Why? Both are viewed on the balance sheet as expenditures rather than income generators, so obviously they're hot contenders for elimination.
|© Athifea Distribution LLC - 2013|