When trying to court press or media attention do you target only the broadsheets? At a recent Public Affairs Directorate workshop journalist and former editor of The Sun, Graham Dudman, talked about the ABC1 readership of the tabloids. For illustration Graham also talked about the readership figures, comparing The Sun (1.6 million) or The Daily Mail (1.4m) with, for example, The Guardian (150,000).
Here is the blurb from the workshop “Media engagement: Diversifying your audiences – EXTERNAL SPEAKER! Would you like your research stories to reach different audiences? Have you ever considered tabloid coverage? Journalist and former Managing Editor of The Sun Graham Dudman will give some engaging, practical and sometimes surprising insights into how you can engage with different audiences through media outlets – print and digital – that you might not previously have considered.” For example:
Timing the release of your press releases
- Send your press release out on 1000-1400. Newsdesks receive tens of thousands of press releases every day. You can help a little by ensuring your release arrives in the newsroom at the critical moment, between 10am – 2pm.
- Send your press release out on a Sunday. This is because the editors demand from their journalists stories which are “Sunday for Monday”, i.e. a feature for Monday to be written on the slower newsday (Sunday).
- Find out the Twitter handle of prominent reporters in the field. Build relationships with these. Start by introducing yourself. Finding them in LinkedIn. Discover their email address but not the one in the byline, that will go to a generic pool. Think about “I noticed you write about that, would you be interested in this?”
The group discussed how to measure ROI (return on investment) from getting stories into the press. The main recommendation was to start benchmarking yourself against the last story you got out.
Finally, remember at the University, direct all press communications via the News Office of the Public Affairs Directorate, this is what they do. They are the experts.