Picture the scene. You have just launched a new employee app. You’ve stuck it up on the website, blogged about it, shared an update on social media and sent a press release to all the usual press contacts in your sector. Job done. But have you fully exploited the opportunity to gain wider awareness and reach new audiences?
If you analyse the story and consider who might be interested in it and why, you could tap into way more media targets and give yourself a better chance of being seen by the different stakeholders who might have a say in the decision to purchase your app.
Look beyond the usual suspects
Let’s look at some of the potential audiences for this kind of story. The obvious one might be the HR media like HRD and HR Magazine. HR people are interested in employees and all things related to them, so that’s a good place to start. But then, think outside the box. Who needs to find the money to pay for employees and any related tech investment? Think finance and a whole new subsection of media targets. What about legal media. The use of an employee app will surely have some employment law implications. What kind of breakthrough technology did it use? There is a whole raft of media titles focusing on software development, apps, mobile technology and security. And how was the new development financed? Has there been a round of funding that the investment media like Tech Crunch will want to know about?
Then consider the verticals: manufacturing, healthcare, transport and retail all have their own dedicated media who may be interested in the specific benefits of your product for their audience. The list goes on, but the key is one word: relevance. How do you make your story relevant to the media outlet and its readership?
Different media need different content
One thing is for sure and that is that the same content sent to hundreds of titles, each with their own editorial turf and readership, will not result in blanket coverage. So, you need to find an angle for the story that will appeal to each different media sector or individual outlet. It’s not just about the content of the story either. You need to think about the pitch. If a publication never runs new product releases, don’t send them a new product story. Try a different approach with say a case study, an interview or a thought leadership article.
Finally, timing matters. You may not be able to get coverage until the publication decides to focus on your sector. Look out for media enquiries using tools like Response Source that are relevant and pitch information in a way that is appropriate to that feature.
Read the media you are targeting
So how do you find out which media to target and how to approach them? Well, a good place to start is by reading the media. I know. Radical isn’t it. But you’d be surprised to know how few people bother to read the websites or magazines they are pitching to. You can refine the list of media to read with tools like Cision and Muckrack, but there is no substitute for reading the actual publication, especially any articles written by the journalist you plan to target. Check that they haven’t recently run a similar piece to the one you are pitching. If they have, approach the subject differently with a case study or survey report.
Keep up with the news
And finally, stay abreast of developments in each sector you plan to target. If there has been a recent change in the law and you are targeting legal publications, make this the focus of your pitch. Show how relevant your product or expertise is about this change. Above all, never stop trying out new and relevant approaches to tell your story and don’t be satisfied with a three-line product piece in Employee App Today.
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