As a small business owner in Westchester NY, you know that local media – the small town paper, local TV affiliate or radio station, and online community websites – can play a huge role in raising public awareness of your brand. Advertising in any of these venues can be expensive. Editorial coverage, however, is always free.
Editorial coverage means that your Westchester business is the subject of a news story, rather than sponsoring the news. There are several benefits to being covered by the local media: it’s an easy way to raise your brand profile, introducing your company to potential new customers as a credible, respected and interesting business. Best of all, you don’t pay a penny for the privilege.
The art of attracting the media’s attention, and securing this valuable editorial coverage is called PR.
Why do some businesses appear frequently in local media while others are perpetually ignored?
Let me share with you a little secret of small town journalism. There’s always a need for great local stories. At the same time, there’s never enough people, time, or resources to find and cover those stories. If you want to increase how often your small business in Westchester NY appears in the local media, make it easy for the media to talk about you.
This involves sending out a well-crafted press release any time something newsworthy happens at your Westchester business. For example, you can send out a news release any time your business:
- Hires a new employee
- Adds a new product or service to your offerings
- Has an employee celebrate a milestone anniversary with your company, such as 5 or 10 years of service
- Wins a contest, award, or recognition
- Sponsors a community, school, or charitable fundraising event
- Has an event, such as a celebrity appearance, book signing, class, or workshop
- Runs a sales event or special promotion* (More about this one later!)
At the end of every week, stop and ask yourself, “What happened this week that the media might be interested in? What is going to happen next week that the media might be interested in?” Craft and distribute a press release accordingly. There are many free & paid press release services for online distribution. These also help with SEO if you work your Westchester business keywords into the press release. It’s a great way to increase exposure & your search engine rankings!
In a perfect world, the media would read your press release, and flock to your store in record numbers to give you front page coverage. However, it’s more likely that you’ll see some of your press releases run as you submitted them (or rewritten slightly) as a local interest story. If you have an exceptionally interesting story, you may even get an interview. It never hurts to try. Every story that makes it into the media raises your Westchester business’s profile.
As an extra bonus, committing to a regular PR routine encourages the small business owner in Westchester NY to look for ways to make their business more exciting and newsworthy. Doing this will attract more public attention, and can result in greater sales and enhanced profitability.