Peace Love & Sillyness

Distributing News to the Media

Posted on: 12/01/2010

Here are my Ch.10 notes from PR Writing and Media Techniques

Reaching the Media

  • the basis of all distribution channels is an up-to-date media database
  • media databases may vary, but all usually provide the following:
  1. names of publications and broadcast stations
  2. mailing addresses
  3. telephone & fax numbers
  4. e-mail addresses
  5. names of key editors and reporters
  • one major directory is Burrelles/Luce, which claims to have listings for 76,000 media outlets in North America
  • print & CD directories are still used, but online databases have an advantage because they are always up-t0-date
  • online databases allow you to get a detailed media list together quickly or print mailing labels, email/fax your news release directly to a reporter
  • editorial calendars = certain issues have a specific editorial focus; trade publication and business periodicals tend to operate on these.
  • tip sheets = weekly newsletters that report on recent changes in news personnel & their new assignments, how to contact them, & what kinds of material they’re looking for

Distribution of Materials (tips for selecting a distribution channel)

  • E-mail – good for suggesting story ideas to journalists/editors, answering media questions, & sending news releases
  • Online newsrooms – good for distributing news releases, media kits, features, corporate background info, & high-resolution photos/graphics. distribution is enhanced by sending e-alerts & having journalists sign up for RSS feeds from the online newsroom
  • Electronic wire services – best for financial news to large newspapers & major broadcast outlets; ideal for multimedia news releases. Includes internet search engines, bloggers, & other social networking media
  • Feature placement firms – good for reaching suburban newspapers & small weeklies. distribution can be done in many formats
  • Photo placement firms – best for high-resolution publicity photos on an international basis
  • Mail – common method for distributing routine materials to local & regional media
  • Fax – good for sending media advisories & alerts and late-breaking important news
  • CD-ROMs – best used for background material (corporate profiles, executive bios, & product info sheets)
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