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2010-03-11 17:11:05

Profit by Publicity: Why You Should Study the Media

 

There’s an easy, effective and affordable way to find out what real estate-related stories media outlets will cover, the types of quotes they like to use or how your  competition is being portrayed by news organizations. 
 
The secret is to study the media. Why bother? Because reading, watching and listening to the news organizations offers one of the best and affordable continuing educations you can obtain on what stories they like to cover and new trends and developments that may affect your own efforts to generate publicity.  
 
By becoming a student of the media and applying what you learn, you can make your own PR efforts more productive and effective. You can then:
 
·        Know what kinds of stories news outlets are likely to cover
·        Target the most appropriate news organizations who will be interested in your story
·        Identify the most appropriate reporters
·        Prepare the sound bites or ink bites they prefer 
·        Provide the news organizations with the best visual to help show your story
 
All you have to do is:
 
·        Study the Web sites of different news organizations.
·        Read a daily or weekly newspaper.
·        Subscribe to publications that cover the real estate industry.
·        Watch the local and national news.
·        Listen to radio news reports.
 
Too busy to read everything or follow everything you should? Then you can subscribe to Google to receive free alerts when stories are done on the topics or keywords you specify.
 
To get the most insights from your research, look for the following “clues”:
 
Print Stories
 
·        How long are the stories?
·        In what part of the publication do they appear? (Business, lifestyle, sports or the front news section?)
·        How often do they include quotes?
·        Who appears to be quoted more often, and why?
·        How long their quotes are and what do you think of what they said?
·        If you had been interviewed for the same story, what would you have told the reporter?
·        What kind of pictures do they use? (Color, black-and-white, head-and -shoulder shots, pictures of products, etc.)
·        Whose byline usually appears above the stories that are of most interest to you?
 
Television Stories
 
·        How long are the stories?
·        What time or part of the newscast did the story air? 
·        How often do they include interviews?
·        Who appears to be quoted more often, and why?
·        How long their quotes are and what do you think of what they said?
·        If you had been interviewed for the same story, what would you have told the reporter?
·        What kind of pictures do they show during the story? 
·        What is the name of the reporter who did the story?
 
Radio Stories
 
·        How long are the stories?
·        What time or part of the newscast did the story air? 
·        How often do they include interviews?
·        Who appears to be quoted more often, and why?
·        How long are their quotes, and what do you think of what they said?
·        If you had been interviewed for the same story, what would you have told the reporter?
·        What is the name of the reporter who did the story?
       
Internet and Database Stories
 
·        How long are the stories?
·        Do they include interviews?
·        Who appears to be quoted more often, and why?
·        How long are their quotes, and what do you think of what they said?
·        If you had been interviewed for the same story, what would you have told the reporter?
·        What is the name of the reporter who did the story?
 
Edward Segal, RCE, is the author of the Profit by Publicity series of live and online classes, audiobook and how-to-reference guide for real estate agents and brokers.  Segal was the marketing strategies columnist for The Wall Street Journal’s StartUpJournal.com, a PR consultant to more than 500 clients and press secretary to members of Congress.   He is now CEO of the Marin County Association of REALTORS® in San Rafael, Calif.  Visit his Web site at  www.ProfitbyPublicity.com


 

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