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Kiss Your Publicist Goodbye and Attract the Media with Your Blog

Monday, September 27th, 2010

Nettie Hartsock

The days of having just a traditional PR person pitching you as an expert are long past. Unfortunately (or fortunately) the old mass pitching methods of fax, spam mail, and phone do not see the uptake they once did.

More than 50% of journalists and bloggers are freelancers. It’s vitally important to remember they are actively on the hunt for the next great story because that’s how they’ll get paid!

That next great story could be YOU.

As a longtime journalist turned online visibility strategist I’ve seen many of my clients apply the power of their social media content to connect directly with journalists and secure media coverage.

Here are five tips on how to use your blog content to garner media attention.

  1. Set up Google news alerts that match your expertise and respond to at least one major media article that comes through those alerts on a weekly basis. Link to the article in a blog post, and give additional insight from your perspective to the article’s topic. Don’t be snarky. Give actionable insight.
  2. Subscribe to three e-newsletters from publications that cover your topic. When you get those e-newsletters, read through them to see if there’s a wonderful article you can cite in your own blog. Again, give your take on the article. (Extra tip: After you’ve made your blog post, go to the site where the original article appears and leave a comment. Always comment authentically, not just to get a link back to your site.)
  3. Be a news breaker. Offline PR people spend hours scanning the news and trying to determine how their clients can comment on breaking events. You can do the same by monitoring media stories and using your blog to comment as things happen. If you’re a fiction writer, for instance, you might keep up with the latest sales in fiction and share your insights with your readers.
  4. Don’t leave out the local and regional. Too often we’re focused only on national blogs, media, and coverage. Once in a while, blog “close to home” by sharing some local insight or linking to your local paper. You’ll begin to catch the local media’s attention. Imagine if your local paper is The Washington Post and the editor is scanning blogs for local folks to comment on business stories.
  5. Stop waiting for just the right blog-bite. The longer you wait to start sharing your insight on your blog, the more the competition will outpace you. Take 30 minutes today and write up 10 things you know that you could effectively comment on to the media. Start building some content around those topics on your blog.

You will succeed!

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For more tips on how to use social media to promote your book and garner media coverage, join Highspot for a free teleclass with Nettie Hartsock on September 28. Full details and registration here.

Nettie Hartsock is a digital strategist and teacher who works with individuals and companies, helping them create and convey their messages to the online world. Find Nettie on Twitter at @nettiehartsock.