How Traditional and New Age PR Can Go Hand-in-Hand
By all means, traditional public relations is still relevant today. Gaining media coverage in print publications is still important and making phone calls can sometimes be a necessary task. But, today it is just as essential to make sure your information hits top news websites, blogs and is mentioned on some social media platforms.
Of course there are still agencies and PR firms that feel sending press kits through the mail is what hits home for journalists. Lots of information can fit into that one folder – a release, background information, photos, CDs, DVDs – and with only a few dollars or so worth of postage attached to it. It still works for some, but there are other, more efficient ways to help your content reach a larger audience.
In today’s digitally-driven world, traditional PR can really go hand-in-hand with E-PR. Those who go the traditional route can use social media as a reinforcement tool and vice-versa. Here are some tips on how you can use a blend of traditional and E-PR to get the best results:
1. If a press kit is sent out to publications through snail mail, try following up with an email first instead of a phone call. More and more journalists are finding it easier to respond to PR professionals through email than by having a phone conversation, especially when they are on a deadline. And, if your material is time sensitive, it never hurts to hit your email’s “High Importance” button. You can’t do that with a telephone. Just make sure the content of your email is attention-grabbing, or you could find it promptly deleted.
2. Using a wire service or emailing your news releases is a way to reach a wide range of publications. Another way is to use your agency’s social media accounts to promote releases. After sending out your material, create posts on Facebook and Twitter to gain even more traction. Better yet, some people are starting to use Pinterest as a means of reaching a larger audience.
3. If your agency is relying on print material only, make sure to have the conversation about moving printed releases and press kits over to electronic files that can be placed on your company’s website. Journalists who have a hard time keeping tidy desks or have a lot on their plate may need an extra copy or two of a release. Make sure your information is accessible on the web so they don’t have to call you up to ask for another one to be sent through the mail.
4. Cold calls can be unnerving at times, especially when calling up a reporter of a daily publication – whether he/she is on deadline or not. Try connecting with reporters on LinkedIn first, and even Facebook and Twitter, to get a feel for what they cover, what they are interested in and how they like to be contacted.