Let’ s face it, getting media coverage for your event can be a powerful boost to build your brand visibility. However, journalists are receiving invites to events all over the city, follow these tips to ensure yours stands out from the crowd!
Develop a plan
Being strategic with your approach allows you the opportunity to really think about how to succeed with media presence. Explore ways to make noise about the event so that the media can witness the buzz and get excited about attending an event that everyone is already talking about. Creating a sense of FOMO (fear of missing out) can be strangely beneficial (apparently, we all want to be where we think everyone else wants to be!) and gaining access to a highly anticipated event, a real privilege.
Do your research
Before sending any press invites, make sure you know who you are talking to. Be clear about your target audience as well as theirs. Who do they write for, who are their readers and what content have they recently published? Find the common thread and be confident with your approach.
Be clear when you pitch
Be transparent, get to the point quickly. Don’t hide your messaging and purpose for the event with redundant, unnecessary wording. Keep it succinct and explain the concept of your event clearly to manage expectations. You will need to convey who, what, where, when and why in your communication.
Avoid sending attachments
Quick glance, easy-to-read visuals will capture the attention of recipients, as opposed to email attachments. Having to click and download a press release, invitation or graphic just adds another step that gets in the way of deciding whether or not they will attend your event. Make it easy for them and grab their attention as soon as they open your email. If you want to be super efficient, add a calendar invite as well.
Arrange onsite interviews
Offer media interview opportunities with spokespeople and special guests at the event. It is important to select people who are comfortable on camera and able to articulate your message clearly. You can also pitch different perspectives for specific reporters as well. If you have a high profile speaker or special guest attending, use this to your advantage.
Always be sure to follow up with media that did decide to attend. Getting back in touch with timely communication will provide you with clear expectations of when to expect any post event write ups, photos etc. It’s also another reason to nurture a new relationship which will be helpful for your next event!
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Ruby Sohi is founder and lead event planner at Royal Blue Events Management. She has extensive experience in event production and marketing. Actively involved in the community, she has served as a board member for American Marketing Association (Toronto) as VP of Programming & Events and International Live Event Association (Toronto) as VP of Marketing & Communications. Ruby has delivered events across Canada and is experienced in producing all types of events including virtual and hybrid formats. Read her full bio here.