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How Local Media Can Complement Your PR Strategy

Do what you always do. Just add to it!

Hyperlocal media are plentiful and often overlooked by PR professionals working for consumer brands. There are more than 11,000 newspapers, 14,728 TV stations and 1,780 radio stations out there across the United States. And securing coverage of your brand in just some of these outlets can greatly buttress your existing consumer PR strategy.

For starters, continue to target all those national news outlets, bigger urban dailies, online news giants, the major morning news shows, and bigger syndicated radio programs. Keep on reaching out to national special interest publications and the national trade outlets that matter to your brand. And continue to beat every social media drum to keep your brand’s thunder rolling among consumers on a grassroots level.

Incorporating local pitches into your current strategy, meanwhile, can be a great supplement to add to your results.

If you are going it alone you are not going to have the bandwidth to personally pitch hundreds and hundreds of hyperlocal community media outlets in addition to the ones you already are calling and emailing. In today’s demanding, fast-paced environment, that’s not an efficient use of your team’s time.

So how can you tap local media opportunities without overhauling your strategy? Here’s how to supplement what you’re already doing:

* Broaden the scope of your current outreach to include more local outlets: If you use a PR service like Cision for list management and to deliver your pitches to journalists, you can simply choose to broaden the scope of your lists to go beyond the top dailies and top outlets you pitch through the system with automated emails.

This is neither costly, nor time consuming — it simply necessitates a bit of smart list management to pick outlets to add to your lists. And don’t forget to add local specialty publications, such as parenting, home & garden, or women’s magazines that are issued by local community newspapers in print and online. You can find these in the same databases you use to locate the bigger national outlets.

* Choose a small set of local publications to pursue in-depth: Fine tune your broader pitch lists by cherry-picking a few key hyperlocal markets for one-to-one outreach. These could include your brand’s hometown or key target product markets, for example. Remember, in many instances the phone is your best bet because — unlike the top dailies — most reporters and editors at local community dailies and weeklies aren’t as overwhelmed with public relations pitches.

* Enlist a content marketing and distribution service to syndicate pre-crafted sponsored content to local media: These services add to what you already are doing with your public relations campaigns by crafting, distributing and tracking content. While you pitch national outlets and key industry outlets, a content creation and distribution service can provide extra coverage on a local level. Just be sure to select a service that targets local media on a national basis, which will help you reach more of your target audience in more unique markets.

* Tap local PR to garner local placements fast and first: Working on a new campaign? Lay down some local press hits to drive initial coverage and show your key constituents placements right away. This gives you the time and cover to go after some bigger national hits and even the freedom to dig dry holes.

Once you’ve made the decision to go after local media placements, it’s time to dig deeper to explore specific tips to get local press coverage. Check out our recent blog post that delves into this with specific tips and advice.Local Media e-Book

To help further, StatePoint Media has written a free eBook providing details and analysis of the local media landscape, along with detailed advice for integrating more local coverage into your PR strategy.

Get out there and get covered!

 

Image Credit: zakokor – Fotolia.com

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