This blog post comes in response to a question I received from an Idea Generator subscriber. Feel free to add your own article marketing question if there's something you need help with!
There are many benefits to being featured in local media outlets like cable television shows, community newspapers or larger print outlets like your city's main paper or magazine. This kind of exposure can help you to:
- Attract local clients for your in-person services or events (workshops, presentations, classes, book signings, etc.)
- Make valuable contacts with potential local partners, vendors and referral sources
- Increase your credibility to both local and online audiences by handing/mailing out copies or posting a link or PDF of your piece
Local media professionals are just like anyone else – they do business with people they know, like and trust. And in this case, their business is to write about you and what you're doing, or have you on their show.
Article marketing is the perfect way to help that process along and build positive relationships with local media professionals. For example, you could:
- Keep your website and/or blog updated with new articles about your area of expertise – this makes it obvious that you are a knowledgeable, trustworthy source of information about this topic
- Write articles that link your area of expertise to current events or issues in your city
- Include the name of your city in some of your titles, articles, tags or within the code of your website (speak to a web designer or SEO expert for more details) so that it is easy for local media to find you
Does it work? Well, I can tell you that I have not actively marketed myself as a coach for years, yet all of the article marketing I did when I was building my coaching business is STILL attracting the attention of local media. Just the other week I got a call from someone looking for local life coaches to audition for a new reality show.
Of course there are other important steps to building relationships with local media professionals than being well-placed in the search engines. Here are three to get you started:
- Be open to media inquiries even when they're not an exact fit. Do your best to connect them with someone else, and record their contact information so you can keep in touch!
- Build on this list by adding the names of any journalists whose work you admire, or who have covered stories on related businesses or issues.
- Contact these folks directly whenever you have news to share. For great PR tips, I recommend that you sign up for Joan Stewart's newsletter. When you do, she'll send you a jam-packed list of 89 Reasons to Send a Press Release.
And of course, remember to practice the four networking basics (be visible, be positive, help out, and educate). You never know when one of your colleagues will get a call from the media that isn't right for them, but is perfect for you!