The 5 unbreakable rules of free publicity

Good publicity can help to propel your small business to another level. Sadly many small businesses don’t make any effort to get any press coverage because they think it’s impossibly difficult to do so.

However, it is really simple to get free publicity for your business. In fact, the reason that many businesses get it wrong is because they try to over-complicate things. Here are the five powerful and unbreakable rules you must follow when trying to get free publicity for your business:

1. Know your target audience and deliver to it

Journalists are ultra-focused on their audience. If the people they are creating content for want to know about a specific subject, that’s what they will write about.

If you turn up wanting to get publicity about something else, they won’t be interested. You need to understand exactly what your target audience is interested in, and ensure your story suggestions fit within that. Get that right and it becomes a lot easier to persuade journalists to run your stories.

2. Be so different that you naturally catch the attention of journalists

Any business that enjoys a certain degree of commercial success has differentiated itself from its competitors. And it’s no different when you pursue free publicity. Your story suggestions need to be packed with “standoutability” (a made-up word that sums it up perfectly).

Journalists get hundreds of press releases and story suggestions every day… if yours are the same as all the others, they’re going to go the same way (the bin).

3. Position yourself as an expert

This is the single most powerful idea in publicity. If journalists know you’re an expert in your field, they’ll turn to you first, time and time again, for information and comment on your industry. And that means your customers will know you’re an expert too.

4. Give journalists what they want and need, when they want and need it

99% of press releases sent to journalists go straight in the bin (these days they hit the delete key on their computer keyboard, often without even opening and reading the email you sent them). It’s because the people who write them don’t understand what journalists want.

You have the opportunity to be in the 1% who knows what journalists want and give it to them time and time again. Journalists are just like your customers. If you don’t fill their needs when they want them filled, they will go elsewhere.

5. Generate creative and imaginative story ideas

Getting publicity is great fun and can invigorate you and your team! And it doesn’t have to be difficult. Yes, you need to be creative and generate new ideas. There are several easy ways to do this, including systems and strategies to help you generate new ideas simply and easily.

There are even some “cheats”, that you can use if you’re not hugely creative. Try these 21 Tried and Tested Ideas to Generate Free Publicity for starters.

Last updated - 1st June, 2016

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