August 6, 2019

[Strategy Spotlight] How to Promote Your Brand in the Media with Gigi Barnett

Everyone has a story, especially every business owner. Self-promotion can be scary but must be done in order to get your name and business out there. There is power in storytelling and sharing your story with the media. Gigi Barnett of Story Sell Your Brand, teaches entrepreneurs how to successfully pitch themselves to the media. Often business owners don’t realize that they are capable of doing their own PR; Gigi shows them strategies to get seen and heard. In this episode, Gigi shares her tips on how to promote your brand with confidence.

Step One -Plan your Purpose:
Look at what I call the T&T (trends and timing) effect of your business. The best story ideas come from trends and timing (significant times of the year). What the business owner notices can also reveal where your industry is headed and editors/producers like predictions.

Step Two - Put the "people angle" at the center of your pitch. Producers and editors want stories that directly affect their audience. If you can couch your pitch using words their audience wants to see and hear, it's golden.

Step Three - Know who and what to pitch. This step can take 15-20 minutes a day. (Just build it into your calendar and do it!) Sit down and write out which platforms are best for your pitch. Where are the people you want to reach? (this isn't just about a producer's or editor's audience - it's about the audience you want to reach, too.) Get the names of those editors/producers. Sometimes this takes a quick call to the news desk (It's OK to do this.)

Step Four - The follow-up! This is key. Many times editors and producers need a little nudging. While I was working in the media, it was perfectly OK to get phone calls from people in the community. Call them! Send follow up emails. Ask, 'When do you have availability on your show?'

Step Five - Keep your contacts handy! I've worked with some clients who have been interviewed by reporters and anchors before; and, they tossed the reporter's business card later. Don't do that! Keep in contact with anyone and everyone you are linked to in the media.

Producers, editors - and especially reporters -- like the "you-scratch-my-back-I'll-scratch-yours" method of keeping in touch. If they're not interested in your pitch, some of them will tell you. This is a good time to reconnect over a cup of Joe; and, go over what they're looking for in a great pitch.