In many instances, shrinking newsrooms mean not only less reporters but less reporters covering the same volume of news as a larger team previously did. In this age of lean newsrooms, standing out from the pack is more important than ever. It isn’t just about pitching a good story, it’s about pitching the ultimate story. When considering which of your business or nonprofit’s stories are best for media, look for one or more of these three compelling components.
It’s great that your business added three new locations over the past year and that your nonprofit was awarded a sizeable grant from a new funder. The question is, what does that mean to the outside world? Did you open the county’s first walk-in medical clinic? Does the grant allow you to offer a new program that fills an existing need or to help clients that were previously turned away? Identifying (and clearly to communicating to media) how a story impacts the community is an important aspect of newsworthiness.
Whether it is proprietary research commissioned by your organization or an industry report that has local relevance, data is a key tool for building one’s case. When gathering background information for a pitch, look for recent studies that are relevant to both your organization and the communities that it serves. Use this data to support your angle and identify why the media should contact your organization for expert commentary.
While the national study your industry trade association commissioned may garner a mention on the evening news, local viewers will be more interested in learning how the data applies to them. Enter a golden opportunity for your business. Let media know you are available to provide a quote on the data and what it means on the local level.
The importance of relevant, local angles stems far beyond data. Perhaps you are a membership organization and have members across the state that can highlight different perspectives on the same topic from different communities.
Honing one’s media pitches to highlight the most relevant key message points, compelling data and local angles that impact the community can mean the difference between a positive feature story and a missed opportunity.