So you’ve gone and written some thorough, valuable, super awesome content and you’re ready to share it with the world. Congrats, go you! But you launch it on your blog and – crickets… Nothing, nada, zilch! What’s going on here? Well what’s going on is that no one knows about your super awesome content! To gain the momentum you want, you’re going to have to ‘hit the pavement’ so to speak and reach out to some individuals that can really have an impact on the reach of your content. I can hear your objections and see the sweat beading on your forehead, “But I don’t know where to start!”, “I’ll have to hire a PR firm!”, “I don’t have time/money for that!” Well you can keep those objections to yourself and calm your pretty little head. I completely understand where you’re coming from. Most of us do not have the luxury of a corporate budget or a copious amount of time to spend learning the skills of public relations, but I’m going to show you that you don’t need either. In this article, we’re going to go over some of the best tools and strategies to do your own PR.
How To Do a PR Pitch
So you’ve written a smashing article and you’re ready to get it out there. But by gosh and golly, how the heck to you get your content in front of the right people? Well now, the first step would be to consider the influential people in your bubble that have written about content like yours before. Don’t just reach out blindly. Do your research and look at the articles they post, go to their Twitter and get to know their style and interests, consider how your content can help them. Wow, that might be a little daunting! Never fear, there are tons of genius marketers out there eager to help little fish like you and I. One of my favorites is Dmitry Dragilev of Criminally Prolific. He produces valuable, detailed content to boost your efforts in everything from growth hacking to reaching out to influencers, such as in his article 40 Best Cold Email Pitches Proven to Get Press. This gem of an article provides fantastic examples of pitches and their explanations. One of my favorite tips is to make sure that you personalize EVERY email. That bit is so important because you need to stand out from the crowd. Think about how many mass emails you get in a day, how many do you open? What catches your eye? This is how your contacts will be thinking. These experts get so many emails a day from people asking for favors. Don’t be that guy (or girl)! Be the one to offer valuable content for your contacts. Wouldn’t you be much more likely to open a personalized email from someone offering you a great guest post for something that may fit into your editorial calendar than an obvious mass email from someone wanting you to go to their Twitter and follow them for “the best news in tech”… No thanks buddy, I’ve got Google Alerts (which we’ll go over below).
How To Find an Email Address
Ok, great! We’ve covered some PR basics, got you introduced to the right kind of pitch and you’re ready to get your feet wet. Gone are the days of endless searching on the web for a journalist’s email address. While it may be great detective practice to search high and low through search engines, social media, and just plain old guesstimating for a journalist’s email address, with the kick-ass technology available today there is no need to waste so much time searching for information that you could have and the tip of your fingers in minutes. Time to jump on your modern search tools to locate the right contacts. A really handy tool to use is Just Reach Out. This program supplies the contact information of the journalists, writers, bloggers, or influencers you might want to connect with that you have targeted for their content. For example, say you’ve just written a solid piece of writing covering a case study on the best times to publish posts on Instagram. You can log into your Just Reach Out account and search for well-known social media bloggers or journalists that write extensively about Instagram. All you have to do is type in keywords relating to your article and the search will return articles relevant to your topic. From there you can ask the program to provide the article writer’s email address and you can send them an email from within the platform. They even take it a step further and have many different pre-written templates for you to choose from. Just a word of caution, using the templates sort of falls under the ‘not personalized’ category so use those templates with caution. It would probably be best to use them as a guideline, but create your own original message. Have fun with it!
Another great option to help you reach out to journalists is Clearbit Connect. This handy little app is a total powerhouse! It isn’t as holistic as Just Reach Out, but is really helpful if you prefer to do your own leg work. You can use Google to research a writer, blogger, or influencer on your own and then type their name into the Clearbit Connect search and find their email address that way. This app blends seamlessly into your Gmail account. So if you use G suite for your many operations, you’ll find Clearbit Connect is an absolute breeze.
Bonus: If you’re in the tech world, hey.press has been making waves as a platform similar to Just Reach Out, but specifically designed for tech startups. Creators Ed and Harry give a straight-forward approach to stressless PR for the techie everyman (or woman). Check out their start up guide here.
Help A Reporter Out is a service made to be a very simple and straight forward way to get yourself out there. All you have to do is sign up for an account and fill out your profile which will include choosing your key areas of interest. HARO will then email you with opportunities that fit those interests. All you need to do then is pitch your idea to the reporter. The outcomes are all good in the ‘hood. This is a great tool for link building, getting publicity, and can definitely help your SEO. You can find the phenomenal HARO course, Easy Media, here. Jasmine will teach you the ins and outs of HARO and how to easily get published. She even includes a live pitching walkthrough. If you are really serious about acing your HARO pitches, you should give Easy Media a try.
Get Google Alerts
If you don’t use it already, you should. Google Alerts can help you keep track of your industry trends, your favorite journalists, publications, and even yourself! Google Alerts is totally free. You just set up keywords you’d like to be updated on and you’ll get periodic alerts to your email from sources that Google has pulled from current web sources. It’s pretty nifty and great for staying abreast of competitors or keeping up with the latest and greatest. In the PR context in can help you see who’s writing about what in your industry, how frequently, and it can also give you an idea of what kind of influence the individual may have. This tactic can further help you when deciding who to pitch when you’ve got some great content to share!
You are now armed with some tips and strategies to implement right away. You can now confidently put together a pitch that will get results and you now have multiple tools with which to research and contact influencers in your niche or industry. You also have a tool that will deliver requests for pitches right to your email inbox and one that will deliver industry alerts to your inbox as well. So now you can go bravely on and start pitching happily and getting the results you want. Happy pitching!