It’s no secret that early stage startups often do not know how to get media coverage. Their founders could be young economics students or programmers who are far better at what they do than writing a PR statement. Luckily, all of this can be taught simply by avoiding mistakes and following tips which Robin Wauters, European Editor of The Next Web gave at the RockPaperStartups conference which was held in Rijeka.
Wauters pointed out the best and the worst ways founders can approach journalists. If you want to get featured in The Next Web, The Verge, TechCrunch or Netokracija for that matter, the whole process starts way before writing a PR statement – it starts with you creating a good product!
- Create and build amazing stuff – if you come up with something truly unique, press will notice it and they will write about you.
- Do your homework – make sure to do a background search of a journalist you are sending an email. Find out what’s their style, what are their interests and make sure to read their work prior to hitting the send button.
- Network from day one – meet and greet people, introduce yourself to them, hustle like crazy. All of it will pay off one day.
- Write a good story – make sure to be unique, to have an approach which differs from others. Capturing one’s attention has to start with a human element.
What do journalist like?
Robin continued by saying that journalist’s inboxes are filled with various PR statements and other materials, as are their Twitter feeds and other social media channels. In order to get any work done, they have to filter through a lot of mail and that just takes time. Make sure to contact journalists only when you have something worth publishing.
As much as you think that your mere existence is important to media, does not mean anything to us. Email us only when you have something worth publishing. When you have big news, give us a call!
Wauters also added that journalists love numbers, unique stories, stories which could change the industry. They also thrive on exclusives and it’s important not to gamble their thrust. Once they find out you gave an exclusive to other journalist, they will cut you off immediately. They also don’t like when they are being lied to or when people exaggerate things and waste their time. To quote him – Kick ass, understand what we do, tell us a good story, be authentic and don’t be a dick.