Press Relations Program for Small Businesses

Press relations are activities used to establish and promote a favorable opinion by and through the media. In learning and understanding how to build an effective press relations element of your business, it is necessary to discern between what is and is not newsworthy. In essence, a newsworthy event should garner public recognition, importance, and interest at the level you wish to target. And understand all sources are a bundle of tools to complete a job and no one tool covers every aspect you hope to cover.

Because of the visual aspect of our society, managing to get the attention of a local television news outlet is an effective way of skipping steps in generating public recognition. By using the news outlet's interest as a proxy for the public's interest, this is a highly efficient means of getting an event into the public's attention.

Whether something ranks as "important" and "interesting" is sometimes dependent upon messaging and frequency of messaging. On the spectrum of importance, entertainment does not generally rank high, at least if one asks normal folk to give a rank of such things. However, consider the amount of money that US consumers spend on entertainment each week: (i) live-gate sporting events; (ii) live-gate concerts; (iii) movies; (iv) art performances; (v) purchasing digital or tangible copies of movies, television shows, and/or music. The list may be endless. But more importantly, it quantifies the "importance" of entertainment in our culture.

Consider the following video from Huntington's WSAZ NewsChannel 3:

There are some good things here and some missed opportunities as well. Some of the missed opportunities stem from the experience of all involved. For example, the name of the organization that the dancers belong is not mentioned. This is important for two reasons at least: first, the studio missed a golden marketing opportunity for at least a few reasons: first, the studio missed an opportunity to reach children that may want to take up dance and have yet to ask a parent; second, the studio that spearheaded the effort to bring the global touring company to Huntington missed out on demonstrating its commitment to the arts in the Tri-State; and three, important aspects of the studio owner's background and efforts were missed.

Are there others? Feel free to list a few.

With that said, as noted above, no single element of the media tool box makes or breaks marketing efforts. In fact, there were several promotional photos and stills captured during the WSAZ visit that have been circulating across social media, as well as a radio spot on the leading talk-radio show in the Huntington market, so the video acts as an extension of the social media buzz.

Overall this is a good example of seeking and gaining access to the local media to promote business and to promote entertainment brought in by the business.