For many people, pitching stories to the media feels like a difficult and sometimes unnerving task.
Some businesses and individuals are apprehensive about the prospect of attempting to raise their profile in this way and don’t know where to start if they are pitching for the first time.
Even the more media-savvy with experience of liaising with the press find it challenging if they are targeting a publication they are not familiar with and haven’t a clue which journalist or editor to run their idea by.
Attempting to solve the puzzle by using a search engine often leads to a dead end – information which is years out of date (you soon find out “Sarah is no longer with the business”), non-specific contact details (the dreaded info@ email address or general switchboard telephone number) and even websites which are not fit for purpose (under construction, generic picture of man wearing hard hat and holding a drill).
And what if you don’t even know which publications you should target? You need to speak to feature editors at food and drink magazines, or get in touch with golf websites – where do you start? There could be 120 of each – do you spend a month laboriously scouring Google?
This is where having an account with a media database website comes into its own.
At Souter PR we pride ourselves on having fantastic contacts in the media, not least because our team heralds from a journalistic background. But even we would need to be resourceful if a client had a great story about astro-turf, telephone boxes or paving stones and wanted to share it with trade media.
The media database we have at our disposal allows us to instantly identify the most relevant people to share a story with. We can target journalists or outlets writing for/about a specific subject or industry. We have the option to narrow the search down to a specific part of the world or cast the net far and wide. We can select, if we wish, the type of outlet, how often it is published and even the language in which it appears.
In the same way a satnav gets you to your desired location hassle-free, without a dozen wrong turns, the database we use effectively opens the door to the people we need to speak to. It doesn’t direct us to that generic email address or switchboard. It produces names, job titles, direct telephone numbers and emails.
Within a matter of minutes we can form a list and put it in front of our clients – the name of the publications, what they write about, the best person to pitch to and even its circulation.
The world’s media is at our fingertips.