How to Get the Wall Street Journal and Bloomberg Businessweek to Cover Your Story, Book, or Guest
As the old saying goes “you catch more flies with honey than you do with vinegar” can easily apply when trying to get a reporter to cover you story idea, book, or company. I attended the Public Relations Society New York chapter Meet the Media panel that featured reporters and editors from the Wall Street Journal, Bloomberg Businessweek, Ad Age and Adweek offering tips and information for getting featured in their publications.
Suzanne Vranica, Advertising Editor at the Wall Street Journal feels that the best relationship with PR is when that PR person’s idea or story would be a perfect fit for a specific writer at a specific publication. Suzanne suggests that if you are the PR contact in your organization, it is best to know how your company fits in the ecosystem of the business world and be able to notice trends and solve problems in that sector so you can provide background to the story. One annoyance to Suzanne is receiving a press release with an embargo. She felt that was overused by many and if that information is going out to other publications with web exclusives, print exclusives, etc. it seems redundant once the story is out. Another thing to avoid is when some have sent an email or called stating, “Bloomberg wrote a story about…” Why would she want to be covering what Bloomberg just did? Do not tweet story ideas to Suzanne since she feels Twitter is a public forum and not the right place as other people can see the conversation.
You can follow Suzanne Vranica on Twitter @VranicaWSJ.
As a reporter for Bloomberg Businessweek, Edmund Lee suggests that if you are trying to get your story or news into Bloomberg Businessweek it is best to know what type of news and industries Bloomberg Businessweek covers, and research by reading the articles and become familiar with the reporters that may be covering specific industries. You will have a better chance of that reporter covering your story. Echoing Suzanne, Edmund also wants to know where your company and products fall in the overall business environment. Another tip is providing value to other reporters that we may be working on a story not specific to your company. If you can become a reliable source for others those reporters will keep coming back to you. If there is a technical issue that can only be answered by someone other than you be sure to have that person available since Edmund may not be able to speak again if he is on deadline. Edmund recommends short e-mails no more than three sentences and if he has the time, may provide constructive feedback for to get back your with a reason why the story was not picked up are covered by Bloomberg Businessweek.
You can follow Edmund Lee on Twitter @edmundlee.
Jim Cooper, Executive Editor at Adweek spoke about how even though Adweek reporters get a majority of the stories by going out to their sources, the job would not be complete without the help of those PR people calling and emailing leads and story ideas. Jim strongly advised if you have an idea for a story in Adweek to take the time and research which writers cover specific topics at Adweek and then go to that person first with your pitch. Following the Adweek editorial calendar helps for you to pitch based on the theme/topic for an upcoming issue. If that reporter/writer is not rushing back to you he is probably not interested in your story at the moment but keep trying since it may be covered in the future. Jim does not mind being pitched on Twitter but prefers the direct message option.
You can follow Jim Cooper on Twitter via @jcoopernyc.
As the Media Editor for Ad Age, Nat Ives shared that the magazine gets stories coming from a combination of sources that include the Ad Age staff and PR folks. He enjoys exclusives since it is easier to cover and eventually everyone else will be covering that story. But Nat finds getting an exclusive can be difficult if the those in PR keep giving it to the same large publications and eventually Ad Age will have to go elsewhere. Ad Age prefers direct access to a CEO and Nat would like, after having an interview with a company executive, to be able to speak to them directly for any follow up questions rather than just the PR staff. Nat prefers to be reached via e-mail, does not care for press releases, and follow-up e-mails are not useful or helpful to him.
You can follow Nat Ives on Twitter @natives.
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