Get your charity seen everywhere using the power of PR
Blog by Skilled Volunteer, Amanda FitzGerald | Sep 2023
A vital part of the marketing mix which so often gets overlooked or forgotten is publicity.
Organisations are so busy trying to engage with their social media audiences that some of the interesting content they put into the daily posts could also be sent to journalists who are always on the hunt for new stories.
Firstly, what is PR?
PR = Public Relations. There is a big difference between PR and adverts. Adverts are paid for and PR is totally free. There is one exception, an advertorial which is paid for as this is a combination of PR and editorial.
Over the years, I have created a proven process called the The 7 Secrets on How to Pitch to the Press, and by following these steps, clients again and again celebrate their huge wins in top tier media outlets as well as in the essential local and regional press. Best of all, they are using the 7 steps and doing it for themselves.
Here’s what’s involved in the 7-step process and can you see, it’s all about the Ps!
- PR Zone
- Press hooks
- Press kit
- PR Research
- Press room
- PR plan of action
- PR campaign
So let’s start off by giving a few examples of PR that you could aim for:
- Magazine Features Online + Offline
- Podcast Interviews
- Thought-Leadership Articles
- Tedx Talks + Speaking Engagements
- Expert Commentary on Radio / TV / Newspapers
- Profile Pieces
- Breaking Or Sharing News Local + National
- Guest Expert Slots
So why is PR important for your charity? Publicity helps you to reach new audiences fast without paid for traffic or ads.
Remember, your social media reach is limited by your follower count.
By getting into the press, your reach is exponential. You could reach audiences from thousands to millions, whereas your social media posts are pretty much limited to reaching a certain percentage of your audience (unless you manage to get a post or video go viral of course).
Let me share with you a few powerful outcomes that can happen by adding PR to your daily social media posting activities:
- More traction
- More leads
- More trust
- More credibility
- More visibility
- More donations
- More speaking gigs
Now I would like to share with you three important PR secrets to help you get started.
PR Secret No. 1: The Press hook journey
Your “press hook” (ie reason to pitch to the press) must be timely, relevant and newsworthy. Not only that, but you have to remember to hook in the audience of the outlet you are pitching to.
Here are the steps for the press hook journey:
- Tune in – you have to keep abreast of current affairs, so tune in or subscribe to the magazine you’d love to pitch to
- Your big idea – this happens once you have tuned in and heard a new report you can comment on or you may have some breaking news about a new fundraising campaign
- Headline + email – create an eye catching headline for your email to the journalist with a short email (no War and Peace please!)
- Pitch to team – your contact receives the pitch, she likes it, so she then shares it with her team or editor who decide if it fits or not
- Coverage achieved – time to celebrate! You’ve got your coverage!
- The audience – the final hook is the audience, they are the ones consuming your commentary / story / news
Please remember when pitching, the most important thing is to make your pitch relevant to the audience of the outlet. Don’t make your pitch all about you. Think about how you can benefit the people listening / reading / watching. Once you have nailed that, you’ll be in a very strong position.
Here is a fantastic free resource I’d like to invite to download as it has masses of ‘press hooks’ ie ideas and awareness days that you can ‘hook’ your pitch to:
PR Secret No.2: Profitable PR Bio Triangle
I have created a concept called the Bio Triangle and it’s a simple yet very effective way to articulate what you do for when you are pitching to journalists, new contacts, prospects and potential investors.
The bio triangle includes your:
- Nail It in 8
- Golden nugget
For example here’s what I’d fill out in my bio triangle:
Top line: Business Coach
Moniker: The Ultimate Door Opener
Nail it in 8: I help entrepreneurs to confidently pitch to the press
My Golden Nugget: I can say hello in 16 different languages
Here are other examples of monikers:
Mary Portas: Queen of Shops
Martin Lewis: Money Saving Expert
Nick Freeman: The Loophole Lawyer
So what is your ‘topline’?
Examples are: Mental Health Expert/ Life coach/ Accountant/ Crypto specialist/ Driving Instructor/ Mindset Coach/ Physiotherapist)
Now you know how to say what you do in the most simple of terms without any jargon, it’s time to created your super short elevator pitch that contains 8 -12 words only. I call this the Nail It In 8
Here is the Nail It In 8 formula:
[I/ We] +
[Help/ Train/ Treat/ Supply/ Support/ Give] +
[Your Target Audience In 1 Or 2 Words] +
[How To] Or [With] +
[Find/ Develop/ Create/ Produce] +
[Awesome Outcome Adjective] +
And some examples to inspire you:
- I coach entrepreneurs how to secure game-changing press coverage.
- we train ambitious executives to break the glass ceiling.
- I coach lawyers on brink of burn out to thrive.
- We coach everyday accountants how to stand out from the crowd.
- We teach aspiring beauticians how to run profitable salons.
- We produce super easy to follow GCSE study guides for SEN (Special Educational Need) kids.
PR Secret No.3: Profitable PR opportunities
We have created the PR7 – which is the 7 Minute PR method that you can add to your daily social media activities. Set your stop watch as this is literally to be done in 7 minutes a day so that you start a very healthy habit that can lead to massive exposure!
- PREP YOUR PITCH/ REPLY
Do this before you set your timer so all you need to do is top and tail the email / reply that you have stored in your PR folder
- SEEK OUT YOUR DREAM JOURNO
Go to Twitter (X!!), LinkedIn or Instagram and search up journalists in your field: health / tech / fashion / lifestyle
- EMAIL/ DM/ COMMENT
Have a punchy headline / response so you stand out from the crowd
When you start to pitch to the press and get featured, this can lead to the PR Snowball meaning you’ll potentially start to get:
- Speaking gigs
- New clients / donors!
- More PR
- SEO juice
NB: The PR Snowball is not just for Christmas it’s a daily/ every other daily activity.
If you’d like any help on getting started on your PR journey, you’re invited to book a PR Power Hour where you’ll have 1 : 1 laser focused attention on you during our 60 minute Zoom call.
You’ll walk away with clarity, confidence and inspiration to pitch to the press as it’s your chance pick my PR brains and create a PR plan of action!
Here is the booking link: www.amandafitzgerald.co.uk
For LinkUpLondon members, use discount code: POWER99 and you’ll be able to purchase the Power Hour for just £99.