Helping you get media coverage
RSS Sources Select News RSS Feed | SOURCESCalendar   

Media know-how

Learning To Live With Editors

By Al Czarnecki

Editorial line-ups
Periodicals have editorial calendars, writers' guidelines, readership profiles for advertisers. Study these and back issues. Editorial fit, good writing and readership relevance will interest an editor.

Canadian Index
The Canadian Index lists stories from hundreds of periodicals, showing title, publication, issue, date, page reference. Study it for keywords and to see how stories have played. (ISSN 1192-4160)

Response Time
A journalist may need to play voice mail tag with twenty sources, do a dozen phone interviews, draft and polish a 2,000 word story…for a one-week deadline. Return all media calls within 20 minutes. You'll make friends.

Contact Log
Start a sheet on every story: create date/time - journalist - paper/station - phone - fax - e-mail - topic - approach to story - also contacting - deadline - run date section/program - action, date, time, person, comment. Use it to stretch your goals in being responsive.

The benefits of coordinated media relations are: response time fast, story lines identified, background information available, the right spokespeople involved, people and locations prepared, approvals determined, PR counsel available.

In-depth interviews
Imagine a conversation where the other person is pulling written sentences out of a hat. When you generate media interest, you should be prepared to do in-depth interviews. Genuine leather has creases, grain, character. You can be both real and positive at the same time. You'll gain credibility.

Al Czarnecki is an accredited public relations professional with 30 years experience. You can find tips and resources on public relations and social marketing at his website: