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Earning media coverage without news releases

By Marjorie Comer

Don’t impede your potential results by requiring a monthly quantity of press releases from your PR firm

You can earn coverage without needing news releases.

Did you know that you can earn great media coverage for your company without writing a press release? In fact, as a PR firm working with national clients, some of Axia Public Relations’ best earned media coverage came without ever writing a news release. Instead, we pitched existing contacts by phone – contacts with whom we’d established trusted relationships.




How do you earn media coverage without a release? Share a great story, targeted to the right news outlet, and have a great relationship with that news contact or outlet. The story is what matters to the reporter and the reporter’s audience, which means the story should matter to you and your company as well.

Only pitch the engaging stories your potential customers would want to read. Your company – and your PR firm – should recognize that some stories aren't newsworthy, and you shouldn’t share content simply to release something. Watered-down content may, in fact, hurt your company.


Quality versus quantity

Far too often, companies are unwisely focused on the quantity of news releases and media pitches their PR firms produce. We’ve had prospects that wanted us to write at least three news releases EVERY month. That’s too many.

Instead of a set amount of news releases each month, companies should focus on the quality of their media relationships and the newsworthiness of their announcements. It’s a waste of everyone’s time to produce materials that aren’t newsworthy just for the sake of meeting a contractual commitment. It’s much more rewarding for us to delight our clients and secure frame-worthy articles through earned media coverage. And we do this by finding the most newsworthy topics each month and focusing on those. Some months will be busier than others. Don’t penalize your PR firm when you have nothing newsworthy.



The company picnic on Friday or Hawaiian Shirt Day aren’t newsworthy topics that mainstream, credible news outlets care about. If we pitched that kind of “news” to a reporter or a tier 1 news outlet, we would lose credibility with our contacts – and so would your company. (That kind of information is an internal intranet post – and maybe a social media post during the event.)


We want to boost your credibility, your company’s image, and build your brand with the public, which is why quality and newsworthiness are both so important to a successful PR campaign.


As PR professionals, we want to do what’s in the absolute best interest of your company, while also protecting ourselves from unreasonable expectations set forth by people who may not understand how PR works. We’re experts in our industry. Don’t partner with a PR firm just so it can produce news releases. That’s something almost anyone can do. Instead, hire a PR firm to earn media coverage for your company. Read Axia Public Relations’ complimentary e-book "Learn Media Relations from the Media” for more insider tips on best practices for pitching the media and earning media coverage.


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axia-leadership-marjorie-cormereClients love Marjorie’s work ethic, speed and diligence. She has worked with Axia Public Relations since October 2011. Marjorie graduated from Rockhurst University with a Bachelor of Arts in communication and loves to cheer for her hometown Kansas City Royals. Learn more about Marjorie.


Featured image credit: 123rf.com

Topics: public relations, news release, earned media

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