You want to promote yourself and stand out from your competitors. So, include PR in your marketing strategy. It will help you to secure free publicity for your photography business!
You’ll need to put in a fair bit of effort, it’s true. Sadly, PR opportunities rarely just land at your door.
But if you want yourself or your photography business to be regularly featured in the media, here are three ways to do it!
Three ways to secure free publicity for your photography business
Whether you’re looking to get yourself or your photography featured in newspapers, magazines, websites or blogs, podcasts, radio or TV, I would recommend that you use a combination of these three PR strategies:
1. Proactively pitch your original news and stories to the press
Press releases and tailored media pitches are the most common way of doing this.
Identify the media publication or journalists you are interested in reaching out to, and then offer them your news.
- A press release is merely a summary of the news you want to share, in the format that journalists like to receive the information.
- A media pitch is a summary of the same information, presented in an email usually.
The aim of both is to secure the interest of the journalist concerned.
But, a word of warning before you reach out. You’ll stand a far greater chance of success if you do your research beforehand!
Spend time researching who the relevant journalist is to contact for the publication you are targeting.
The editor is probably NOT the person you will want to approach. It is the editors or journalists working on the specific section that is relevant to your pitch that you’ll want to get in touch with. For example, the Lifestyle Editor or the Picture Editor.
Or, you should be able to find contact names and email addresses within the publication itself (if it’s a printed newspaper or magazine) or on the publication’s website.
Also, be sure to pitch journalists only stories that you feel are well suited to their publication and you know they haven’t covered before.
Anything irrelevant will simply highlight that you haven’t done your research. And it won’t put you in a good light with the journalist concerned. In the PR world, relationships are so important. So this is a faux pas that you won’t want to make.
2. Help journalists who are working on commissioned features
If you’re nervous about cold-pitching a journalist, why not help them with something that they are working on already?
Right now, journalists across the country are being tasked by their editors to create content for the publications, TV or radio stations they work for.
And guess what? The writers of these commissioned articles and features may well need people like you to provide expert comment or case studies.
So, pick the low-hanging fruit. Why not be that expert?
If you can find an opportunity that aligns with your specialist subject, or you have a personal experience, story or anecdote that could be relevant, put yourself forward.
If you can provide exactly what a journalist needs for an already-commissioned article and can provide it quickly (journalists are usually on tight deadlines), you’re in with a chance of being featured.
3. Leverage hot, topical news stories and join in on the conversation
Finally, if you notice that the media are covering a story or topic that’s relevant to what you know about or have had experience of, you may be able to shoehorn yourself into the news agenda.
This technique is known as ‘newsjacking’.
It relies on you being able to find a fresh angle on a current news story.
Pitching an opinion piece or providing an expert commentary are two examples of how you may do this successfully.
I’ve written more about newsjacking here.
So, those were three simple ways that you can secure free publicity for your photography business.
Which of these three PR approaches will you try out first? Do let me know in the comments!