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Why you should ask about a newsroom’s daybook

By Jason Mudd

Be aware of a media outlet's daybook.Today, I want to share with you the work Axia Public Relations is doing on earned media and helping clients with news coverage. TV newsrooms often keep a daybook for their news shows, which they use to see topics they want to cover each day and in the future. If you want the news team to cover your story, you need to be in that daybook. And, if you have a big announcement, you want to be first on the list. It’s important to know where you rank on the list because the list could be five things, or it could be 20.


Here’s an example: Today I contacted major TV newsrooms in our client’s market, letting them know that on a particular date next month, our client will make a big announcement. We wanted to make sure that there wasn't a lot of competition for that particular news day. 



When we called to find out what was in the newsrooms’ daybooks for a month from now, most had very little booked. That’s good news. However, there’s more to do to ensure the news team covers your story.


I know I've called TV shows or network affiliates to ask, "Are you sending a crew out to this event?" And they've said, "You're on the list." That's not good enough, though, because you need to know where on the list. How high up are you on the list? And how many other things are you competing with? This helps you know if the media really will come out and cover your news. 


The other thing you want to consider is that you don't want to give too much notice. Too much notice can backfire, and not enough notice can backfire. I recommend when working with TV news, especially local affiliates, you give them a few days’ notice unless your news is evergreen. If you're trying to have a guest segment and your news is evergreen, you probably need to think about reaching out to them much earlier, because those segments are planned well in advance. For breaking news and news of the day, if you give too much notice, they become bored with your topic. You have to stay fresh and new and tell them something they've haven’t already heard. Having your topic on the newsroom’s radar for three weeks is probably too long and it'll be stale. 


Use these tips when talking to the TV assignment desk. Ask them how busy their daybook is and what other opportunities might exist for you to get on it. This will help you earn more media coverage and get your company in the news. For more information on what kinds of stories journalists are looking for and how to create lasting relationships with media outlets, download Axia Public Relations’ complimentary e-book “Learn Media Relations from the Media” today.


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Clients love Jason’s passion, candor, and commitment as well as the team he has formed at Axia Public Relations. He’s advised some of America’s most admired brands, including American Airlines, Dave & Buster’s, Hilton, HP, Pizza Hut, and Verizon. He is an Emmy Award-winning, accredited public relations practitioner, speaker, author, and entrepreneur and earned his certification in inbound marketing. He founded the PR firm in July 2002.

Topics: media relations

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