The Manhattan Project--2016 A to Z Theme

Always a work in progress--welcome to my blog...

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Media Matters!

Paying people to hold signs is one of the olde...Paying people to hold signs is one of the oldest forms of advertising, as with this Human billboard pictured above (Photo credit: Wikipedia)



      Have you included advertising in broadcast media and print publications in your promotional budget?    Probably not is the answer for many of us.   Advertising can be very expensive.  But media promotion can also be free or at least relatively cheap.

         Larger businesses and organizations and celebrities have public relations departments or agents who are responsible for getting word out to the media.  Most of us can't afford this, but that doesn't mean we aren't newsworthy.

          If you have a product that you want people to know about then you should try to find some way to make it newsworthy.  Start by assembling a press kit.  Include photos and print stories that can be dispersed to media outlets.  Include anything that makes what you have to offer stand out.  Provide testimonials from customers or other media sources.  Personalize the story of your product by relating your own story.
Look for every angle that makes you and your product of interest to the public.

          Once you have your product and your story developed, look for ways to tell the world about it.  Shoot for big targets, but don't overlook the small ones.  Many publications will print free announcements for upcoming community events.  If you have an appearance scheduled, make sure you let the local paper know about it.

         Get to know contacts in the media who will help you get noticed by guiding you through the proper channels.  Did you know that many communities have public access television stations that have talk shows that feature local people and businesses?  Their audiences are usually small, but it's a great way to get practice before the cameras so that you'll be ready when your big break comes.  And you never know who will be watching and what breaks can come from a local appearance.

          Offer to write a column or feature article for a local paper or a specialized magazine.  You will probably be working for free, but consider the work you put into this as a vehicle for advertising yourself.  Your name is your brand and your brand gives your product credibility.  Do whatever seems to make sense in getting yourself and your product known.

          And don't forget the vast array of internet options that we have within easy reach.  Most of you who are writers are probably thinking in terms of establishing your platform through blogging and social media.  These are grand ways to advertise yourself at little or no cost.  But don't just stop there.  Make appearances whenever possible on other people's blogs or internet radio.  If you have content to provide. look for sources that are looking for that content and can provide you a forum to get your message out.

          The topic of media presence is huge--much too big to be covered in a short blog post.  There are many books on the topic.  If you are about to embark on a media campaign or have found your past efforts to be unsuccessful, read up on the topic.  There are also some excellent blogs and websites devoted to this topic.  Do the research and talk to people who have experience, but most of all get out there and do something.

             Media matters to a marketing campaign, but you have to reach out to the media and let your voice be heard.  Then, once you've gotten noticed and made the big time, you can get your PR department to take care of things.

For the letter 'M' I've chosen two candidates:

Madeline Mora-Summonte at The Shellshank Redemption is having a Motivational Month of April during the A to Z Challenge.  Be sure to stop by.  As I write this she's almost at 100 followers--maybe we can break through that number today.

Nicole Ayers at Madlab Post has been a frequent guest on this site as well as on the A to Z Blog .  She is a frequent quality commenter on many of our sites.

You Asked For It!

M also stands for Marcus Clearspring who created the popular A to Z Navigation Buttons for last year's Challenge.   He's done it again.   For those of you who are interested in adding the buttons to your site visit Marcus's site Writing Investigated.

If you don't want to add the buttons to your site or would just like to test them out, there is a special site for the badges at http://a-z.marcusclearspring.com/

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37 comments:

  1. Very informative Lee.

    Enjoy your week-end.

    Yvonne.

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  2. Great post Lee. When starting a business it is always important to remember that good media and good business go hand in hand, they both correlate.

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  3. At a recent writer's talk a successful Indie author said TV was her key medium for marketing - that she reachers a much bigger audience that way.
    Great post.
    Wagging Tales

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  4. there is just so much great information you have--thanks

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  5. Lee, thanks so much for featuring my blog today! This is my first year doing the Challenge and I am so enjoying it. :)

    Happy A-Z!

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  6. There are so many different options! Thanks for the tips :)

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  7. This is a great post, and great advice! I think more and more people run into the trap of thinking "oh, I am just going to promote through social media" without realize that emailing out a press release can be astoundingly effective!

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  8. Press releases hit high on Google. I recommend those. Also, Internet radio is good.

    Jolie du Pre
    Precious Monsters

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  9. Wow! Lots of things to ponder and LOTS of links to check out! Thanks!

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  10. This is such a comprehensive list of media considerations! I hope to be referring back to this sometime in the near-future! :) Thanks Arlee!

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  11. I am lucky that years ago I met a woman who does PR/websites, etc., and I would say, SPEND THE MONEY to at least consult with a good PR professional, and develop a marketing strategy that is tailored to where YOU want to go, and what your skills are.

    Sure, you can jump from marketing website to website and this one says use Twitter - that one says DON'T use Twitter; plus a variety of other suggestions. You can go mad on your own trying to figure it out.

    It is well worth the money to actually HAVE a strategy, instead of flailing of trying to do it all at once.

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  12. My publisher does a lot of the media stuff, although I have sent them some book blogger contacts before.

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  13. I'll never look at the Little Caesar's guy the same way again ...

    Happy A to Z!

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  14. Thank you for the comments so far this morning.
    Before jumping into anything, it's better to test the water first and make sure there's enough water to keep you from smacking into the bottom right off the bat.

    Lee

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  15. You're right about it being expensive to place ads in media, but you've also offered some alternative, less expensive ways to promote. That's great.

    I found that by volunteering to do our Friends of the Library publicity and website, gave me a lot of exposure. One woman on the board writes a weekly column in our newspaper and has featured me and my books three times! FREE. I've been asked to do writing workshop where I can also display my books and sell them.

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  16. Great post with great tips!! I really enjoy reading your blog. Here from the A to Z ... http://takingbackmylifemakingitmyown.blogspot.com/

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  17. Great tips. I'll be marketing the heck out of May... got to get April out of the way first!

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  18. C.Lee-- Thanks for providing your examples. The opportunities are out there if we seek them out and grab them if they come our way.

    Carla -- Hope you'll come back. I'll be by to check your blog out as well.

    Annalisa -- I wish you great success with your efforts in May.

    Lee

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  19. Lovely post, such great information :) I'll have to pop back later on and read some earlier posts that I missed! Have a wonderful weekend :)

    Nikki – inspire nordic

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  20. PS - thank you so much, I'm enjoying this challenge so amazingly much! I'm so sad that we're already so far through the alphabet!

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  21. Hey Lee,
    First of all, nice to see you using an exclamation mark in the title of your posting, for dramatic impact!
    This might surprise you, but I have done a lot of work with the media and indeed I'm not worried, in my case of getting promoted by them. I'm just a shy, unassuming guy. I mean, even though I'm real famous and have been interviewed and had my blog read on BBC radio to a worldwide audience, all I do is write for cathartic and therapeutic reasons. If the end result of that is that I can be of encouragement and support to someone who I have the great pleasure in interacting with, to me, that's one heck of a result. All the best to you and those who are involved with this challenge.
    Gary

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  22. Good info as always, Lee. I still laugh when I think of the guy dressed up as Uncle Sam in front of an accountants office during tax season...one year he was on stilts!

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  23. Great advice. I wouldn't have thought to use public access shows to promote.

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  24. The power of social networking is limitless.

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  25. Nikki-- It'll be over before we know, but I think we'll need the rest.

    Gary -- The ever humble superstar!! (two e-points for heightened exaggeration)

    Chuck -- Or around here they sometimes have the ladies in tacky looking Statue of Liberty costumes.

    Emily -- I have a friend who has done a public access show for many years. She's always looking for guests. Somebody is probably out there watching.

    Lee

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  26. I already added the navigation button to my sidebar, Lee and I love it. You were my first "surprise" spin. Imagine my excitement when I clicked the magic button and landed on your blog. This is fun, I feel like I am playing wheel of fortune.

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  27. Hi Arlee, Good to be here again
    very interesting and informative
    tips here for the writers.
    Keep inform
    Good wishes
    Philip

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  28. As usual, a well-written post chock full of good information!

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  29. Thanks for the M bloggers, Lee -- I hopped over and paid them a visit.

    Patricia

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  30. This is a good post. It is informative, and gives solid thought to the role of media.

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  31. just came upon a blog owned by a promising young writer. It wanted me to join live journal. If i didn't choose to share data with live journal, i could not post. So I figured I'd post as anonymous and put my link in the body of the message. It made me do word verification and then after i hit "post"
    it told me my comment was thrown out as spam!!!!

    too many barriers to commenting!

    Mimi Torchia Boothby Watercolors

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  32. Very informative post - well thought out and wonderful delivery. Thank you!

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  33. You have no clue as to how many ideas you just gave me. I already volunteer with a lot of organizations that get my name out there, but there's always more than can be done.

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  34. I visited Madeline's blog at the Shellshank Redemption within the last few weeks. It was nice to read her posts.

    Thanks for highlighting my blog here. I forgot to read your "M" post and remembered like the night before last...so late, I know. My bad. Forgive me.

    There are great tips you mentioned here in this post about media and advertising. Press Kits are very important and speaking from experience, it helps to always have one readily available because you never know when an opportunity to promote your business in the media will come knocking.

    When one of my films screened at a film festival, I had to send a presskit to the festival organizers and I had just about everything ready to go -- movie poster, flyers, bio, synopsis, etc. with regards to the necessary information -- EXCEPT for a photo of myself. I ended up having to send a regular summer snapshot of myself, which was what ended up being used in the festival program booklet. Talk about a lesson learned!

    ~Nicole
    Blog: The Madlab Post
    *Rockin' the A to Z Challenge!*
    @MadlabPost on Twitter

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Lee