This presentation teaches you the following: How to build strong media/blogger relationships, how to prepare for and nail the interview, how to maximize that great coverage and how to measure and show PR results.
PR Bootcamp: Building Media Relationships & Maximizing Coverage
1. PR BOOT CAMP: HOW TO BUILD
MEDIA RELATIONSHIPS &
WOMEN’S EXCHANGE OF WASHTENAW FORUM
2. JACKI HALAS
Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan | @jacki_halas
Jacki has broad experience in the communications
industry, with her favorite disciplines being PR, event
planning and social media marketing. She currently
handles PR/event coordination and planning for
President and CEO Dan Loepp at Blue Cross Blue
Shield of Michigan. She is also actively engaged in
the company’s social media efforts.
She serves on the IABC Detroit and Heritage Region
boards and is a member of the National
Management Association. A proud Detroit and
Michigan State University alumna, she loves to
travel, play soccer and snowboard.
3. NIKKI LITTLE Identity | @nikki_little
Nikki Little serves as Identity’s social media
manager and is responsible for managing the
internal operations and growth of the social media
team. She also serves as an account manager for
several of Identity’s clients, focusing on integrating
social media strategy with traditional
communications efforts to help companies build
brand awareness, create new customer
relationships and grow their business. Additionally,
Nikki manages the content on Identity’s blog, ID
Nikki is secretary of Social Media Club Detroit,
manages the bi-weekly Help a PR Pro Out
Michigan Report e-newsletter for communications
pros and is an executive board member of
Operation: Kid Equip, among other involvements.
4. WHAT IS PUBLIC RELATIONS?
Definition from the Public Relations Society of America (updated in 2012):
“Public relations is a strategic communication
process that builds mutually beneficial
relationships between organizations and their
• Whether it’s you or someone else, do you have someone
on your team (internal or external) dedicated to PR?
• Have you identified goals and a strategy related to PR?
• Would you say you have good relationships with
media/bloggers who cover your industry?
6. CASE STUDIES WE’LL FEATURE:
• Jacki – BLUnite campaign
BCBSM made moving 3,000 of its suburban workers to
downtown Detroit a positive, exciting experience. Local
businesses, civic leaders and political dignitaries
celebrated the unification of their Blue campus and
“homecoming”. This was a fully integrated
communications campaign with heavy emphasis on PR.
• Nikki – BRU Fest fundraiser. Identity helped launch
Children’s Leukemia Foundation of Michigan’s first
annual BRU Fest beer, burgers and wings fundraiser in
2011. The campaign included elements of media/blogger
relations, blogger/organization partnerships, social
media and paid media.
8. BEFORE RELATIONSHIPS ARE CREATED:
• Create media/blogger wish list (use this to keep track of
relationships moving forward)
• Create a Twitter list to monitor them
• Search for competitor coverage (use tool like Newsle)
• Read their material before ever reaching out
• Determine where they are active online
• Determine how they like to be contacted – Is blogger PR
friendly? Does journalist seek story ideas via social media?
• Follow on Twitter, subscribe on Facebook
• Start commenting on articles/blog posts/social content
• Participate in industry chats (#journchat)
• Share their content
• Share company news as you have it or story ideas on
why you are relevant as an expert source for stories
10. AS RELATIONSHIPS DEVELOP:
• Continue commenting on and sharing content
• Engage in more casual online conversations
• Invite to coffee or lunch periodically (bring exec if
• Connect on LinkedIn and subscribe on Facebook
• Meet up at events and tradeshows
• Share relevant company news and product/service demo
• Invite to subscribe to company
• Keep master relationships list updated with meetings
13. ONCE STRONG RELATIONSHIP IS
• Continue finding opportunities to connect and
share story ideas/company news
• Top of the list when new news to share
• Make them feel special and show you value the
relationship (VIP at events, behind-the-scenes
• Always send a thank-you for coverage (email,
LinkedIn message, or small gift if coverage was
15. THINGS TO AVOID:
• Smothering and obnoxious follow up
• Only talking about you and your company when
you comment or respond on social channels
• Complaining publicly if you’re misquoted or the
story doesn’t turn out how you wanted it
16. GROUP DISCUSSION
• What challenges do you have when it comes to building
relationships with media and bloggers?
• Who owns the relationships (me, someone else on team,
PR agency, etc.)?
• How much time/resources can you/do you want to
dedicate to building and maintaining relationships?
• Which online channels make the most sense to use?
• If you don’t have it, do you think you need in-house or
agency PR support? Why?
• Who from the exec team conducts interviews? Does it
depend on the topic?
18. THE INTERVIEW – PREP
• If interviewee isn’t media trained, invest in media
• Get as many details about what reporter/blogger
wants to discuss as he/she will share
• Find out how much time person has, how long
interview will be and if it’s live or recorded
• Put together key messages/talking points (know
well, but don’t memorize word-for-word)
20. THE INTERVIEW – DAY OF
• Be relaxed
• Show emotion and enthusiasm, but don’t overdo it
• Make sure your voice is strong and words are clear,
particularly for broadcast
• Speak in soundbites
• Never look at camera unless you’re being interviewed
from a different location and you’re instructed to speak to
• Turn their heads – it’s your opportunity to educate the
interviewer and readers/listeners/viewers
• Record yourself if possible and play back to improve for
21. THE INTERVIEW – WHAT TO AVOID
• Industry jargon
• Inappropriate attire – keep it professional
• Don’t get nervous or uncomfortable if there is silence
while reporter takes notes
• Saying “um” or “like” too much
• Stumbling over words and mumbling
• Sharing information you weren’t prepared to discuss –
nothing is off the record!
• Complicated explanations – people read at 6th grade level
23. GROUP ACTIVITY
• Take a few minutes to think of the top 2-3 stories
you would like to see covered in the near future.
Now, add 2-3 key messages for each.
• Share with your partner. Discuss: Are those
ideas newsworthy? Why are they relevant? Are
your key messages strong enough? Is there
• Brave volunteer for mock interview
25. HOW TO MAXIMIZE COVERAGE
• Identify who would most benefit from seeing the coverage,
then determine vehicle/platform
• Share internally
• Reprints for new business opportunities, tradeshows and
• Include in new business pitches or follow up emails to
• Add to online newsroom
• Add to social channels (be diligent about this – not every time,
and customize message for each channel)
• Add to email signature
• Add to blog as a case study
• Link to coverage in executive bios
33. HOW TO MEASURE RESULTS &
• Don’t rely solely on clips to communicate success
• No AVEs (ad value equivalency)!
• Good old coverage book – sections for proactive and reactive pieces,
break coverage into sentiment
• Show how coverage ties to your communication goals
• Quarterly/yearly overview of new relationships developed and
opportunities created (master relationships list)
• How many pieces of coverage included key messages
• New business opportunities/inquiries from coverage
• Google Analytics and Clicky – did media coverage bring traffic to site?
How did that traffic behave when on site?
• Share of voice – how much more is your company being talked about
online than your competitors?
• Did sales increase? Was event attendance met? Did public