EPISODE 9: WHERE TO FIND JOURNALISTS WHO ACTUALLY WANT TO HEAR FROM YOU
by Simone Sauter
Pitching yourself to a journalist can be a scary experience.
What if you mess up? What if they just laugh at your naivety and lack of experience?
What if you spend all that time and effort getting in front of the leading journalists in your niche, only to have the door slammed right in your face?
But you know that reaching out to journalists, blogs and magazines in your niche is an important part of growing your business? It can help you to become more visible to your ideal client, grow your reach, build your reputation as an expert in your field and gain that vital social proof and credibility.
This is what will help you gain clients with ease.
So, let me take a huge chunk of the hard work out of your hands and explain how you can use several tools (both free and paid) to reach those journalists who are out there looking for stories like yours, and take your coaching business to a whole new level of success.
Click on play and listen to this episode:
WHY IS IT IMPORTANT TO REACH OUT TO JOURNALISTS WHEN YOU’RE GROWING YOUR COACHING BUSINESS?
Journalists can help you achieve your business objectives.
They’re what we call ‘multipliers’- they can help get your message in front of the people that count. Whether this means you get featured in a magazine or another online or offline source, it really doesn’t matter.
Just take a look at all the fancy websites that are owned by leading coaches in your niche. They always look much more credible when they’re featured in Forbes, Cosmopolitan, or a similar publication because it shows that they’re perceived as an expert when it comes to one specific topic.
This means your goal as a coach should be to get media coverage, even if you don’t think it’s possible for you.
It IS possible.
Start with local media or the smaller media outlets and then turn your attention to bigger ones once your business starts to grow.
As long as you know what you’re talking about and you’ve learned how to approach them, you’ll really start to work some magic with your coaching business and of course, your income too.
YES, YOU CAN!!
I’ve gathered together three really awesome tools that will help you find those journalists who want to hear from you.
The problem is, unless you feel ‘ready’ to approach these journalists and make it happen, you’re simply wasting your time here. It’s going to be too overwhelming, you’re going to feel like you’re just not good enough and you’ll quit before you’re ahead.
So, let me tell you, it was a mindfuck for me too, especially the first time I reached out to a journalist.
I just felt like a fraud.
I felt like, “Oh my God, who am I? What do I have to say? I’m a no one, no one knows me, no one knows my blog, no one knows who I am or what I’m talking about and I have no credibility whatsoever!!!”
It was tricky because I kept coming up with all these stories in my head about why I couldn’t approach a journalist, why I was too small for them to even care and why I wasn’t even good enough.
So, let me get one thing clear. YOU ARE GOOD ENOUGH.
You already have everything you need to be interesting enough to attract a journalist’s attention. They will want to weave a story about you and feature you in their magazine or online. Why?
Because a journalist’s job is to write stories and you have exactly that – a story (even if you’re not feeling 100% confident with it just yet.)
Provided you know how to pitch your story to the right journalist and bring across your message, you can give that journalist exactly what they need to convey important emotions, entertain, inform or to create something interesting for their audience.
Knowing that should take the pressure off a little bit, even if it feels really big and scary in your head.
But believe me, it’s not that big of a deal.
I USE THESE PR TOOLS TO TARGET THE RIGHT JOURNALISTS
Now let me introduce you to three tools that I use to use to find journalists who want to hear my stories without me having to spend a ton of time searching online or doing any horrible cold calling.
#1: I created my own strategy
In the very beginning, I didn’t have lots of money to invest in my company and I certainly didn’t have money to invest into a piece of software that would help me to find journalists.
So, I thought long and hard about how I could create the same PR tool, but for free. I came up with a genius idea. Here’s how it went:
1.) I set up Google Alerts including keywords around the topic of heartbreak and relationships
2.) I set the notifications to ‘daily’
3.) Whenever I received an email, I’d scan for an interesting article.
4.) If I didn’t recognise the magazine or blog, I’d find the name of the journalist, add their name to an Excel spreadsheet then do some research to find their email address (LinkedIn is perfect for this!).
5.) I started to read what they were writing about and I started to reach out to them.
This helped me to build a list of interesting journalists that were already interested in my niche and the topic of relationships, dating and heartbreak. It was a very simple way of getting a list of journalists and it worked!
I reached out to them on a regular basis, I introduced myself to them and I told them that if they ever needed someone to give them an interview on one particular topic, they could reach out to me.
I also read the magazines I wanted to be published in, as well as all the women’s magazines and media outlets that were interesting for my topic. I kept adding to my spreadsheet and reaching out to those journalists.
#2: Use HARO (helpareporterout.com)
HARO is an online network with helps connect journalists to sources.
You can head to their website, tell them that you’re a source, create a profile and then subscribe to whatever topics you are interested in. Then you get a daily email that will include requests from journalists who want to talk about what you also want to talk about! Great, don’t you think?
#3: BuzzStream to the rescue!
BuzzStream is an amazing tool and I love it! It’s a paid tool (the basic version costs $24 a month), so it is still very much affordable and also works brilliantly. Basically, you can just type in any keyword and it will show you several leading people who are writing about this keyword.
You can do all kinds of fancy things such as filter them on the number of Twitter followers, when they were active, how long they’ve had domain authority on different categories and their location.
Then you can put them all in one database called BuzzStream Outreach. This has several features that you can use to reach out to journalists and influencers, including tagging, a rating on how interesting they are, and much more.
The tool pulls all the communication data from the website automatically, so you can have the email address, Pinterest, Facebook and LinkedIn accounts in one place.
If you like the sound of this, here’s a video that might explain better how it all works.
I highly recommend that you give it a go because it’s super easy, super intuitive to work with and it provides you with a great overview of everything. It will really help you discover journalists in your niche and help you influence your outreach on a next level. Give it a try!
So, there you have it – all the information you need to find journalists who are interested in your niche and will actually want to give you publicity. In the next post we’ll be talking about how to pitch a journalist (including the dos and don’ts) so you can put your new skills into practice.
Remember that you can listen to the podcast version of this blog post over on iTunes whenever you want. If you do this, please take a few moments to leave a review and to subscribe to the podcast so that I can get ranked higher and help more people take their PR and marketing efforts to a whole new level.
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