This guest post is by Michael Haaren of Creators Syndicate/Dallas Morning News.
Many bloggers and other brandbuilders are moving en masse into Twitter, Google+, and other new media. While these should certainly be part of your overall media strategy, don’t neglect TV, radio and other legacy media. They still have plenty of reach and prestige, and are starving for cool stories to tell. Here are five tips for getting your name in lights.
1. Grab the big picture
Legacy media is grappling with tectonic changes. Before you pitch any idea to a TV producer, radio-show host, or newspaper or magazine journalist, take a few minutes to see what’s happening in their industry. Since your “target” is dog paddling in those trends, knowing them helps your pitch bob to the top instead of sinking to the bottom.
2. A good pitch is usually short and succulent, like a fish hook with a worm on it
It’s trite but worth remembering—the journalist is a fish and you’re the angler. You’ve got to cast something we’ll bite at. And since we’re even more info-stupefied than everyone else, you only have a moment to catch our eye.
For example, I recently put out a query on Peter Shankman’s Help a Reporter Out, better known as HARO, which many journalists and producers use to find interviewees. (Queries are distributed three times daily and are free, so be sure to sign up while you’re there.)
Since I write about home-based gigs and careers—which now includes many bloggers and experts, like Darren working in a home office in Melbourne—I wanted to hear from people who have unusual home-based businesses.
As soon as the query went out, pitches began to flood in. I scanned them in spurts, in between posting to our Facebook page and screening a job lead for our website and trying to keep the dog from chewing his hot spot again. (Like many journalists, I work from a home office, too.)
Soon, I was “hooked” by a lead-in that described a baby fawn lying on a bed of broken glass, in Pennsylvania Amish Country. The glass, I learned, came from antique bottles, discarded long ago. Collectors would scoop up intact bottles but leave the broken ones behind, and wildlife like the fawn had to cope. The artist pitching me, Laura Bergman, turned these fragments into remarkable pieces of jewelry. The