Thursday, January 10, 2019

Publicity Secrets (Summary of Harrison Teleseminar)

January 10, 2019

Using the acronym MEDIA, P.R. expert Steve Harrison presented the following information about getting publicity, as part of his video advertisement for his National Publicity Summit training via Bradley Communications Corporation. I [DWC] summarize it here.

We don’t realize how special our own information is. The media need guests! You can be a regular interviewee. The keys:
M - make a decision to become better known.
E – evaluate your “hooks.”
D – deliver  your proposal for a good story / show.
I – impact the audience.
A – amplify your publicity.

In general:
If you email, start with a subject line that makes them want to open the mail. Not merely worthwhile but one that will give their program better ratings. Promise the audience benefits. Why should they care? Tease a bit, don’t give away all the story. Make them want to learn more:  “Coming up….” The producers want “a show in a box.” Need a hook. “10 Foods You Should Never Eat.” Story, story, story. Prepare catchy email title and tell the story in a few paragraphs. They get hundreds of emails a day. If you have an idea, give them information and sometimes the access to a location.

Be persistent, not feisty. Watch their show. Have visuals, demo. Be confident, humble, polite. Seek to be unique. On radio, you are trying to be visual in an audio medium. Know your strengths but be willing to go outside your book’s boundaries a bit.

Here’s a M.E.D.I.A. check-list:

M - Make a decision to become better known. Decide you will get heard/interviewed regularly.

E – Evaluate your “hooks.” Make them clear and clever. “5 Tricks….” What’s in It for Me? Fast results. Use “you” in the title. Mention credentials: “scientist,” “Harvard.” How to…. Have props, demonstration where can.

D – Deliver a proposal for a great show. Try to meet them face-to-face. Else, call or email. Not just a book, but position self as an expert. Have material to back up your claim to expertise: Book. Video. Audio. List of appearances.

I – Impact their audience. Make them feel you gave them material of great value. Solutions, stories, followed by Call to Action. What should people do? Buy book? Visit website? Sign you to speak? Trash a myth, turn it around. Recall Rich Dad, Poor Dad: what the rich teach their kids: your house is not an investment, but an expense. If you want them to book you as a speaker, mention solutions and how you applied them. Mention your talks elsewhere. Have a readily remembered website title, best with a benefit. [e.g.] Don’t be bashful. Do give value. Be on a mission. Get others to join you. Make a movement. 

E.g., Carole Brody Fleet, author of Widows Wear Stilettos; her husband died of ALS, but nothing written met her needs. Thus, others likely had unmet needs, too. Needs gave her a Table of Contents, effectively. Realized she needed publicity quick. By now, 750+ radio show appearances, topics around death. Message: you don’t have to suffer alone, in silence. Extended this to all manners of loss. Enjoys meeting people who have been affected. Does not measure her success in sales. Change lives, move them, ease their pain. Highly competitive media environment. Have a web site, with tapes, lists, books, mp3…. Media platform needed. “Here’s what I am; here’s what I do; let’s get together.”

Tell your story. Why you do what you do. Who you are.  

Print media. Looking for stories. Build a relationship with writers. Suggest stories. Must tell your story well. Like elevator pitch. Query letter, a 4-paragraph sales pitch on a story. Example title, “It’s the idea, stupid: 100 ideas per employee per year.” “The Unkindest Cut: What Steve Richardson’s Jigsaw Cutters…” Editors get hundreds of emails a day, and you must entice them to open yours. Title line should have headline and subhead. Story must touch people: tragedy, comedy, newsworthy…bar is higher for non-celebrity. If local, you have an advantage in local media. Story: beginning, middle, exit.

E.g., Ron Clancy was a natural. Resident of NJ and first article was in local mag. Orphan who grew up in Philly orphanages. Xmas eve they would go to Mass, and he always remembered the carols. Went on quest to produce CDs etc. of beautiful carols. Boxed sets. Lavish. His passion.

Another, Joan D. had a story, Super-size Cycle, company for large women. Flattened the tires of a bike first time. “I’ll make the bikes myself.” Health story for a web publication and another for a small business newsletter. NYT editor wanted case study: a choice with a dilemma. Joan had a choice: how far to expand…manufacture where?

A – Amplify your publicity. Connect with media. Then do more with it. Author got book talk on Good Morning America, later was asked, “what did you do with this? Tell your customers? Put on website?” No, she missed these opportunities. Let media know you have done media. Have a media page on your site. Hardest is first major coverage. Others then think you are a safe choice after that. Your first session can be a “discovery” outing. Dr. Lombardo did this, became a regular on the Today Show, as is Dr. Ish Major. Did good job on first interview. Show flexibility…beyond what is in your book. Become “Go-to Guest.” Don’t forget to look good. Get appearance advice.

Douglas Winslow Cooper, Ph.D., LLC

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