Publicity is even better than advertising because it is more credible in the minds of your audience. Advertising is something you create, control and pay for. Publicity, on the other hand, is something someone else says about you. Publicity is more believable than advertising because it comes from a third party. Essentially, publicity is based on news—news that you create.
What is Newsworthy?
At its name suggests, news deals with things that are new—something that just happened, an innovation, an event that is taking place or a person who was just hired. Your publicity can be based on these categories, or anything else that will intrigue the public. Stories that fit into the following categories are likely to make good news stories: impact on audience, proximity, timeliness and novelty.
Here are some examples:
- Impact—A new gardening tool revolutionizes the way you plant seeds
- Proximity—A new store opens in your neighborhood
- Timeliness—A food drive runs through Sunday
- Novelty—New cell phone ring tone can only be heard by dogs
Getting the Word Out
The most common way to generate publicity is to issue press releases. You write a press release as a news story, using all of the same techniques a journalist would use. The only difference is that a press release does not attempt to be objective. You write it to encourage a journalist to dig deeper into the story, or even better, to get an editor to print it as you wrote it.
To do this, you must begin with a news hook or lead that has at least one of the newsworthy elements. After that, you list your facts in descending order of importance so if an editor needs to cut your story, he or she can simply cut from the bottom, assuring your important or new information remains intact.
In addition, remember to post your press releases on your Web site. This will increase your credibility and offer another avenue for keyword optimization.