I recently moderated a panel on media relations at a Chemical and Engineering News (C&EN) event for scientific marketers following the recent ACS fall meeting in Boston. I was lucky to have two experts on the panel who will join me for this special episode: #100. Amanda Yarnell is the Editorial Director at C&EN and John Kang, is a Senior Director of Strategy and Planning at HDMZ, a health care and science marketing agency.
The key takeaway from the session is to never overlook the importance of building relationships. Developing trust over time works both ways and it is worth the effort.
…something you need to consider if you wanted to develop a robust media relations strategy. I mean it’s called media relations for a reason. You have to develop these relationships with the outlets and with editors and journalists. – John Kang
To that, I would simply add that I think sometimes there is the earned media opportunity that you are looking for and then there’s the longer play that you may not be instantly looking for, but by creating that relationship with a journalist, they’re looking for you the next time and they have a bigger story perhaps that you really should be part of… – Amanda Yarnell
It’s essential to think about the job of the journalist. While you might think that your brand has something newsworthy, what readers are interested in (like all of us) is a story.
A story can be about trends or about how someone solved a challenging problem, for example. If you want a better chance at earning media attention, bring that to a journalist, and then explain how your product or service fits into the bigger story.
Keep in mind that mobile consumption is beginning to dominate the media landscape. The good news is that opens up more possibilities (like a podcast!) And don’t overlook smaller publications or local events.