In a perfect world, you can turn your brand into a viral sensation by creating a few engaging social posts and the universe does the rest. While this isn’t technically impossible, it’s not a strategy you should bank on. Rather, learning how to pitch your business to get press is a much more sustainable means of elevating your brand.
Even if you have no PR experience, getting comfortable pitching your brand should be a top priority to help grow your business. After all, who knows your brainchild better than you?
What is PR?
PR, short for public relations, is a way of shaping a brand’s image to be better perceived by the greater public, which for most businesses means more eyes watching, more voices talking, and inevitably more sales.
Large businesses have the luxury of having big PR budgets to create the much-needed buzz that eventually helps to get press and bring in the dollars. As a small business owner, you may not have the same luxury and will have to do a lot of the work on your own with minimal time and resources. Don’t let this deter you. Pitching your brand to editors, even at some of the world’s top publications, is much easier than it sounds.
Keep reading to learn more about how to pitch your business to editors and get a response (and, of course, press coverage opportunities).
6 tips for how to pitch your business every course creator should know
1. Do your research to determine if and how your brand fits
Writers often get pitches from brands that fall far left of the content they typically write. While most writers are always open to expanding to new areas, some things just don’t make sense to pitch. With that being said, please do your due diligence to research (keyword) not only the interests of the editor you’re looking to connect with but their publication. Try your best only to pitch where it makes absolute sense.
2. Be clear about your brand’s story
Editors are constantly receiving pitches, which means when you’re able to catch their attention, even for a split second, you have to make it worth their while and yours. Be very concise when pitching but not long-winded. Think of your email pitch as an elevator pitch, aka a quick synopsis that entices the reader to learn more and, of course, to respond. Aim to keep your pitch down to about 150-200 words (a small paragraph) and attach any images or assets that may further entice the editor.
3. Provide links (and check them twice)
This may seem like a no-brainer, but you’d be surprised how many people get so excited about introducing their brand to someone that they totally forget to share how one could learn more. Make sure you link your brand’s official website (the “about” page preferably) and your branded social handles in every pitch. Depending on your comfort level, you may want to link your LinkedIn or some other website that allows the editor to learn more about the person behind the brand aka you.
This is especially crucial when promoting yourself as an expert and authority on a topic.
4. Offer up a sample or demo—if it fits your budget
Some things you simply need to try to grasp fully. Whether you’re creating a tangible product or launching a new, exciting course, it may be worth allotting a certain amount of freebies or giving free access to what you’re pitching. Giving away anything for free as a small business owner or creator can seem a little daunting, however, a PR sample can make the difference between an editor skipping over your business and giving your brand excellent, invaluable press coverage.
If you’ve taken the route of creating a mini course, try offering up your mini course to the editor—or even providing them with a coupon code for access to your full course. You never know what story ideas this may spark and give you the media coverage you crave.
5. Keep records of your pitches and always follow up
Whether you decide to keep a folder in your inbox or create a full-on document detailing your pitching efforts, be sure you keep track of who you’re pitching to and when you’re firing off those emails. In addition to the initial pitch, you want to follow up when you can. After a week or so of no response:
Try sending a short email to follow up with the editor and, of course, help bring your message back to the top of their inbox.
Whatever you do, don’t come off spammy by emailing the same editor time and time again.
And don’t forget to use your better judgment to determine when you should simply move on.
6. Don’t get discouraged
The truth of the matter is most editors get hundreds and even thousands of emails daily, no matter how small the publication they work for may be. An editor not being as responsive as you may like may boil down to the fact that they’re constantly sorting through thousands of emails on top of fulfilling the duties of their respective roles. Don’t take a lack in response too hard. It’s not a no, more like a “not right now”. Keep pitching until you get that yes.
In the mean time continue to focus your creative efforts into building your authority and trust among your students and delivering the best product you can. The press may soon follow.