When it comes to getting the word out about your business, many people think of the usual PR strategies. Press releases, events, setting up a presence on social media sites…all of these are useful strategies that lots of businesses – including Talk to the Press! – use to get publicity.
But they aren’t the only ways. We have helped lots of businesses place the real life stories of both their owners and clients in the press, helping them get coverage in publications they might otherwise struggle to crack. Personal stories immediately engage readers and can help potential clients see a different side to your business.
We’ve put together a guide containing our top tips for businesses hoping to generate coverage of their business using real-life stories to get publicity. We have lots of experience in the area so if you have any questions, please e-mail us at [email protected]
Leading by example
Owners and managers of companies may very well be capable businessmen during working hours but many have incredible personal stories that would make incredible human interest articles in women’s magazines and newspapers. Maybe a personal tragedy made you decide that life is too short not to follow your dreams, inspiring you to set up your business? Did you struggle with your weight for many years but now run a team of personal trainers? Perhaps you turned your unusual hobby into a profitable business?
Earlier this year, we interviewed Helen Gourley, a group manager for jewellery sales company Miglio. She used to work in a bank and sold jewellery part time. Now she has traded in her old 9 to 5 routine to sell jewellery on her schedule. Her decision has allowed her to spend more time with her kids and to spend her life doing something she is deeply passionate about.
We placed Helen’s story in the Scottish Sun and she was photographed surrounded by her company’s jewellery. Want to follow Helen’s example? Drop us an e-mail at [email protected] and we’ll see if we can help!
From the staff room to the printed page
Another great resource for stories could well be your staff. If they are willing to talk about their life experiences, we may be able to place their story in the press. Perhaps you own a gym and one of your trainers is a former client who lost lots of weight thanks to your company’s help. Maybe one of your trainees was headed down the wrong road when she got a job at your firm and turned her life around.
Obviously, you must never pressure them into talking to the media. Some people do not want to speak publicly about their experiences and we would never pressure anyone into doing so. But if they are willing to open up, we could secure them a fee for their tale. We may also be able to get your company a mention or even a link to your website.
Many businesses have a profound impact on the lives of their clients. Their uplifting, inspirational, sweet or funny stories may well be perfect for one of the country’s major national newspapers or women’s magazines.
Do you have any clients who would be willing to share their story with the media? For example, maybe you are a hypnotherapist who helped cure a client of a fear of flying. Now she’s become an air hostess!
Before you get in touch with us, give your client a quick call and check that they are OK about speaking to the media. Once they give you the go-ahead, drop us an e-mail at [email protected].
We’ve worked with a number of companies to secure them press coverage. One firm we work with frequently is plastic surgery company Transform. They simply send us a brief synopsis, giving us a bit of information about their client. If we think the story has potential, we’ll give the case study a call and have an informal chat with them. We’ll then pitch the story to our contacts at the major publications and try to drum up interest. If the story is published, the case study will get a fee for sharing their story and Transform will often get a credit in the piece.
If you’d like to talk further about how your business can use real-life stories to publicise your work, please get in touch with us at [email protected]
Try to find out if there are any unusual details or interesting angles to the story you are submitting. Quirky stories are always popular with newspapers and magazines.
Always ask your clients and staff members if its OK for you to send out their story and contact details.
Don’t panic if it takes a while for a deal to be ironed out. Some stories go within hours of us sending them out but others take a little longer.