Local media coverage for your cleaning or restoration services business can bring in some fantastic brand marketing benefits. And if you operate in a highly competitive local market place, then you need all the marketing advantage you can get to boost your business.
However, local media coverage, much like every other aspect of marketing requires a solid planning and implementation strategy. So whether it is coverage in a local magazine, or television network, or even in local publications, you will need to carefully orchestrate the right kind of push and execution strategy.
To help you navigate this extremely fruitful yet challenging landscape, here is a list of ten strategies you can use to gain local media coverage for your cleaning or restoration business.
10Best Strategies to Ace Local Media Coverage for your Cleaning or Restoration Business
Each of the above mentioned local media outlets get pitches by the dozen from local businesses spanning different industry types. So unless you can come up with a notice-worthy pitch for featuring your business, gaining local media or press coverage can be extremely challenging. Having said that, getting local media coverage for your business is not impossible
Consider the following 10 strategies.
- Identify and Understand your Chosen Media Outlet
A marketing plan is a core criteria for any business. And it all begins with first identifying the target customer and then coming up with a highly effective marketing plan and strategy of execution. The same principal applies here as well. You need to start by carefully identifying and understanding your chosen local media outlets first before you can come up with a pitch for featuring your business.
Every local media outlet is different with respect to its core audience base, its feature specifications, business ethics or goals, and of course budget range.
In this sense, the first thing you need to understand is that not every local media outlet is right for your business.
As a cleaning or restoration service, you definitely want to get covered by a local media outlet that is in sync with your industry type. So for example, if a local magazine covers fashion, even if it is a highly popular media outlet, it makes absolutely no sense for you and for the magazine to feature your business.
On the other hand, if there is a magazine that focuses on home interiors or any other home services, you could consider pitching for a feature article about your business or at the very least a mention via recommendations or even advertisement for your business with the magazine.
So start by first identifying the different local media outlets that are a fit with your business or industry. Carefully look at the type of content they generate and if it aligns with your brand marketing requirements, then come up with a plan to approach them for some media coverage.
- Connect with the Right Individual
The next most important area of focus when you are vying for local media coverage is connecting with the right individual within your chosen media outlet. Whether you are approaching a magazine or television network or news publication, keep in mind that there is an entire content creation and editorial team of individuals who are assigned different roles and responsibilities. So connecting with the right individual is crucial if you don’t want to get shot down or overlooked.
If you don’t know anyone personally, consider looking at their website or social pages to know who is who and their scope of responsibilities within that media outlet. At the very least you could call up their reception and make enquiries.
Once you have this information, it’s time to make contact. It is best that you chose email as your mode of contact instead of calling directly. Voice messages are again best avoided – you don’t your message to get deleted before it has even been heard.
Email is always safe and the preferred mode of communication since it packs both the right level formality and the required space for communicating your message or pitch to get featured.
While we are on the topic of connecting with the right individual, you might also want to spend some time building connections with the right kind of people in the business. A great place to do this is social media. You can always follow people on Twitter or LinkedIn (professional social spaces) or even connect with people on Facebook or Instagram if it is appropriate and you think you can form a connection.
You could also network with people in your local chamber of commerce – perhaps get to know people who have connections within local media outlets. You may hit the jackpot or you may not. Either way, it is a great place for networking.
- Target Regular Features
Most magazine, print and online publications as well as local television networks run a regular feature. This can be a monthly item or even a weekly item that they feature and media outlets are always on the lookout for a newsworthy and fresh items for their regular feature section. You can always approach the media outlet for this section – provided of course your business feature is a good fit for this section.
So do your research first and if you feel your business actually fits into a media outlet’s regular feature section, then go for it. Create a solid pitch and judiciously follow the submission process. You don’t want to get rejected simply because you were careless about meeting their submission process!
Alternately and if possible approach the right person for submitting your pitch for getting featured with your chosen media outlet. Provide as much information you can and also list out reasons why you think your business is a good fit within their regular feature item.
- Showcase yourself as an Expert
A great idea for getting some local media coverage for your cleaning or restoration business is via interviews. However, in order to be interviewed, you need to first position yourself as an expert or go-to-source for the right kind of information about your industry.
If you run a blog or even if you do guest posting, be sure to include this information in your pitch so editors know you are a credible source for getting information or quotes on relevant topics. You can also send out emails indicating that you are available for interviews. You may not get approached right away but if a media outlet decides to cover a news item or feature pertaining to your industry, they might contact you at that time.
In addition, you should create a page on your business website which showcases you as an expert within your industry and list out your contributions either by way of expert guest posts, or interviews, or any other achievement that you think can get you the desired attention.
Even if your local media outlet editors don’t know you, a simple Google search will point them in your direction.
Positioning yourself as an expert is one thing – you also need to ensure that you are easily and readily accessible. Whether you are required for an interview or even for just a quote, it is imperative that you make sure you can be easily reached via multiple communication sources including email, phone, social pages, or even your business website. You also want to make sure that you respond quickly – it doesn’t serve your purpose to delay your responses.
- Be Present at Community Events
Community events are a great place to gain some local coverage for your business. Most local community events get press coverage. So make it a point to attend these events – rub shoulders with other important members of the community and more importantly be seen doing this by the press.
If the event allows setting up of booths for local businesses, make sure you have a booth for your cleaning or restoration business at the event. In addition to gaining some press coverage, attending these events can do wonders for your networking and possibly even connect you with new customers.
It’s a win-win whichever way you see it!
- Create a Resource Center
Easy coverage of your business by the local media is something that you need to carefully consider.
You can create a media page or resource center for your business and include important information such as your logo (black and white and in color), image of your services/products, screenshots of top executives and employees as well as important facts and figures about your business.
The idea is to make it easy for the media to easily access and pick up information they need for including in a feature item.
- Get your Local Media to Coveryour Special Events
If you are planning a business event or celebrating a milestone or business anniversary, make sure you invite the media. Use personalized invitations if possible – you are trying to impress so why not do it right and with style!
If possible, set up a short live or impromptu interview with the media. Or if you are busy at the moment, make sure you tell them that you will be more than happy to set some time aside for an exclusive interview with them sometime later.
- Be Philanthropic
One of the best ways of attracting local media attention is by engaging in some form of philanthropy. Especially if the community has been hit by some event or if there is a specific need for organizing a charity. Even if you are not directly organizing a charity event, you can get involved by contributing to the event either with money or in kind.
In addition to giving you a sense of satisfaction, taking part in such programs can also help people identify your brand with something other than just your business activity or service.
- Make the Best Use of your Press Releases
When releasing a press release, make sure it includes all the necessary facts, figures, and information that someone covering the release would require to write or produce a featurecovering your business.
So be sure to include necessary information such as your business logo, screenshots of your business, service or product images, and profile pictures of your top executives. You should also include any other information by way of important links to pertinent business information, or videos links, as well as links to your social media profile pages.
Business facts and figures such as your market space, scope of operations, or information about other office locations or even information about your target audience are all items that you might want to include in your press release. It simply is about creating the complete package of business information for local media outlets that are interested in covering your business.
- Stand out from the Competition
If you want your local media to cover your business or give you priority over your competitors, then you need to do something unique that makes you stand apart from other players in the market.
In other words, make a brand statement that can give your business local media coverage. It could be anything from a unique or new business service/product idea or launch. Or it could a collaboration or partnership venture with another business. It could also be something like you being the first business to adopt a new and innovative technology solution. You get the idea right – it can be anything that can offer an angle for a story or a feature to a local media outlet.
Whatever you choose to do, make sure you clearly articulate the idea so reporters and writers know what to write about and are clear about specific areas of focus.
The following ten strategies are great for getting your local media to cover your cleaning or restoration business. Of course this is not an exhaustive list – so go ahead and get creative in your own unique ways.
There is just one more thing you need to keep in mind here – make sure you give a shout out the local media outlet which covered your business. Lastly, don’t forget to share all these juicy items on your social pages and across all your digital real estate as a way of adding one more layer of trust to your brand credibility.