Bryant Ruiz Switzky, a senior staff reporter at the Washington Business Journal, where he covers banking, finance and corporate accountability, writes about what a company should do to get coverage by the business media.
Switzky writes, “If you’re trying to get on the good side of the business press, here are some things to keep in mind:
1. Journalists are people, not impenetrable institutions.
Most publications list the reporter’s email address and/or phone number next to every story they write. But few readers actually call or write to us, probably because they think of us as an institution. We’re not. We’re just normal people, sitting in front of our computers, trying to find interesting things to write. We find our stories primarily by talking to people. If you want us to find your story, find the reporter who covers your industry in your area and call them up.
2. It is not news that your customers love you.
If you ask, most business reporters will say they’re looking for news. That means something that is happening or is going to happen that matters (or should matter) to business people in the publication’s coverage area. Think things like mergers, expansions, changes in company leadership — stuff you can’t manufacture if it isn’t already happening. It is NOT news that your company exists and that you “really care” about serving your customers.
3. Tell me something I don’t know.
Just because there’s no immediate hard news happening with your company doesn’t mean we don’t want to talk to you. If you want to get our attention, tell us about something surprising, interesting or troubling happening in your industry or at one of your competitors. We journalists are a curious lot. Pique our curiosity and you will be on our radar. When we need someone to comment about trends or big news in your industry, we’ll happily return the favor and reach out to you for comment. If we do reach out to you, call us back right away. We’re probably on deadline.”
Read more here.