We have all heard of CRM
– Customer Relationship Management. The concept is to
build rapport with your customers and develop a sense of
trust. As your relationship develops over time your
customer will become your ally – and if you are very
lucky, your evangelist. Why not do the same for media?
When you think about how
most marketers handle the media, you wonder why
press releases get any attention at all.
The first cardinal sin
that is committed on a regular basis is trying to get a
reporter to cover a “story” that is not even on their
beat! If I cover international politics, why would I
want a press release from you about your new dog food?
Sending information to the wrong person is one of the
quickest ways to get your information instantly deleted
from incoming correspondence…forever.
The second mistake that
is made over and over is sending out press releases for
the sake of sending press releases. Why go to the
trouble? Trying to manufacture a story out of nothing
gets you no press and turns reporters and editors
against you. There is an art to finding relevant trends
in the industry and finding news from your company that
actually corresponds to the trends. When you can do
that, you have a story. Make a release worth a
Reporters and editors get
sick and tired of hearing from marketing folks who only
contact them when they want something. When was the
last time you picked up the phone and left a voicemail
for a reporter on your media list telling them how much
you enjoyed today’s article and why? I’m not talking
about kissing up; I am talking about taking an interest
– creating a relationship.
Have you properly thanked
a reporter or editor for covering a release you sent
out? Have you ever sent them an e-mail or called them
about a newsworthy industry event that had nothing to do
with your company? Have you ever given them the
slightest inkling that you care about something besides
how they can make you look good?
OK, let’s talk MRM.
Let’s make a vow to be sure that our releases go to the
right targets. Let’s make sure the releases are
worthwhile. Let’s build a relationship with the
influential journalists and media players in our
industry and separate ourselves from the other 98% of
the pests that hound them. Let’s give a little quid pro
quo. And if we’re really lucky, we may just get an
evangelist or two.