Become a Media Source: The One-Person Marketing Act

small business media source

A few savvy small business owners have found a way to get free press, and all the trust and new customers that come with it: Become a media source.

Ask anyone who has ever handled a marketing budget, and they’ll tell you: The more free press you get, the fewer dollars you need to spend. But most small business owners aren’t exactly reinforcing their doors because the media is knocking them down to spread the good word gratis.

The key word there is “most.”

A handful of small business owners have put in the legwork to become a legitimate media source. Because of that, the media can count on them for a quote in the local paper or statistics that a national outlet can link to. In return, they gain exposure to their name and brand. They become a leading authority in their industry. And they are seen as more trustworthy and established than their competition.

Are you interested in being the small business that the media has on speed dial? Here’s how to get started.

Keep Your Data at the Ready

If there’s one thing the media loves, it’s good, solid data. Anyone can paint a picture with words, but numbers give people something more tangible to hold on to.

Keep track (and regularly publish) facts and figures that apply to your industry. If you’re an accountant, you should know how what percentage of your clients waited until the extended deadline to file their taxes. If you run an ice cream shop, you should know how many people prefer strawberry to vanilla. If you know something most people don’t, you have value to the media.

Know the Value of a Good Press Release

It’s great when the media comes to you, but sometimes you need to be the one to make the initial introductions. That’s where a good press release comes in.

If you’re doing something newsworthy, the news needs to know about it. So the next time you run a charity drive, win a major award, open a new location or save a chipmunk from a burning tree, reach out to your local media with a well-crafted release that explains your newsworthiness.

Publish Quality Content

When you’re researching for your newest blog post or podcast, you probably turn to the internet for information.

Here’s a secret: The media does, too. And high-quality bloggers and vloggers frequently get picked up because of their ability to discuss a certain topic. So if you’re publishing quality content, chances are the media will find it — and you. Enough said.

Have an Opinion

We’ve said it before: Small businesses that get political are rarely rewarded for it, and we’re not changing our tune now. But there’s a big difference between talking politics and having an opinion on events happening in your community.

Do you have ideas for way that a proposed dog park could be improved? Do you have thoughts on how to improve a local intersection that has a high frequency of accidents? What about ways to get more people involved in the city’s annual strawberry festival?

Getting out your opinion locally, even if it’s unrelated to your business, can help build name recognition in the community. And topics like these have low stakes and present little downside to discussing.

Nurture Relationships With Local Media

You wouldn’t make a new friend and immediately ask them to lend you a thousand dollars, so you shouldn’t expect that your first encounter with the media will automatically lead them to shouting your small business’s praises from the pressroom. Instead, you need to develop and nurture the relationship.

Connect with your local radio station on social media. Regularly comment on stories the newspaper shares. Seek out media personalities at events you both attend. The more often you connect with them, the better they’ll remember you when it comes time for them to seek out a source.

Are You “Media Source” Material?

Marketing takes a big chunk of change out of your budget no matter how carefully you manage your money. But becoming a media source can lessen the burden by getting your name out there, establishing you as a leading authority in your industry and driving business to your doors — all for free.

That’s something to stop the presses for!

Need help making the right connections? Let Mischa Communications open doors for your small business. We’re ready when you are!