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3 Ways To Use PR To Win Media Attention for Your Content



3 Ways To Use PR To Win Media Attention for Your Content

Your great content deserves a publicist.

A public relations strategy built around your content helps both PR and marketing teams meet their goals (which should, in turn, support business goals). It gives your PR colleagues a reason to talk about your brand in the media. It expands your content’s reach to new audiences through earned media coverage. And it increases opportunities to earn backlinks from authoritative sites, which could help your SEO rankings.

A PR strategy for your content should be an easy internal sell – it uses existing resources to obtain free distribution for the content you’re already creating. You can’t get more budget-friendly than that.

A #PR strategy for your #ContentMarketing means free distribution for work you’ve already done. You can’t get more budget-friendly than that, says @AnnGynn via @CMIContent. Click To Tweet

I asked three “content publicists” how they spot and pursue opportunities to pitch content to media outlets.

Choose the right media outlets

Vanmark, a manufacturer of produce and potato processing equipment, was making a video with its client Downey Potato Chips when their PR rep – Michelle Garrett of Garrett Public Relations – saw an opportunity.

Michelle wrote a story based on the video for Vanmark’s blog, then pitched it to industry publications she knew accepted content originally published on the provider’s site.


The article, Downey’s Potato Chips Poised for Growth with Upgraded Vanmark Equipment, appeared on the manufacturer’s site and ran in Food Industry Executive, Snack and Bakery, and Potato Pro.

“The publications really liked the story and the visuals. That made it an easy piece for them to publish. There have been no follow-up questions or anything,” Michelle reports.

TIP: Include numbers in your content. Journalists appreciate data showing the solution helped and how more than they do sentences just saying it does.

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Michelle, co-host of #PRLunchHour on Twitter Spaces, makes it sound easy. It isn’t. The secret, she says, is to know your audience – in this case, the media outlets whose readers, viewers, or listeners are similar to your desired audience.

In your research, identify both topical media and the parameters around their content. For example, do they publish content from third parties, or does all their content have staff bylines? If it’s the latter, don’t expect them to be interested in accepting the content you provide.

Work with your PR team to educate executives and team members so they understand that not every publication will publish the content you provide.

“We understood this story was not Wall Street Journal material, but that’s OK because the client knows where its prospects and customers spend time,” Michelle explains. “I always try to get clients to focus on that first before we do any media outreach. Sometimes they think it’s the WSJ, but really, it’s industry publications.”

When pitching your #Content, focus on media your prospects and customers read, says @PRisUs via @AnnGynn @CMIContent. Click To Tweet


Streamline the PR content process

Roy Sarkar, principal at Roy Writes Content, uses a content-based PR strategy for his client Crank Software. The strategy is based on two primary goals – brand/product awareness and backlinks from sites with high domain authorities.

“I pitch several sites with similar topics, then customize the copy for submission,” Roy says. He’s hit on a way to streamline that process to save time.

First, Roy writes a base article with five to seven sections (delineated by H2 subheads). Then, he customizes the submissions by choosing three sections from the base article to create one appropriate for each outlet.

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Following that process, he got a story published on Embedded: How to Build a Better UX Experience for IoT Devices published on Embedded.

TIP: A pitch is a brief overview designed to let the media outlet know what the article will cover and how it would benefit their reader. Don’t craft pitches that are more than a few paragraphs. Even better, make a bulleted list for easy reading.

Like Michelle, Roy says success comes from researching the outlets, finding the right editor or journalist to contact, and explaining why the article is related to the content they already post.

He sometimes includes a link to a story in the publication he’s pitching in the articles he pitches. This approach demonstrates he’s familiar with the outlet and can help its internal-linking strategy.

Find the right editor or journalist, then explain how the #Content you’re pitching relates to what they already publish, says @readroy via @CMIContent. Click To Tweet


Repurpose existing content for third-party media

Christoph Trappe, content director at Voxpopme, bases his content PR strategy on repurposing content from the company’s weekly market research podcast, The Reel Talk: The Customers Insight Show.

That’s how Quirk’s Media ended up publishing this article on cross-functional collaboration under Voxpopme co-founder Dave Carruthers’ byline.

“We have all these podcast interviews, and we wrote an article based on all the things people have said,” Christoph explains.

Voxpopme pitched several article ideas based on its podcast topics to Quirk’s Media, which selected one. The Voxpopme team then put together the content.

Christoph says he doesn’t see the outreach as pitching. “I try not to be obnoxious and ‘pitch’ content when I have a good story that I think might be of interest,” he says. “When I email people, I just say, ‘Hey, I thought this is interesting. Do you think it is?’”

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He sends those emails judiciously so as not to irritate the media outlet and cause them to ignore future content outreach. For example, after his recent pitch to Quirk’s Media, Christoph won’t pitch them again until late this year or even next.

Offer #Content to media outlets judiciously so they won’t ignore your future outreach, says @ctrappe via @AnnGynn @CMIContent. Click To Tweet

Get more attention for your content

A successful PR strategy for your content involves several things. Plan ahead – what content is under creation that could work for media, too. What media cover those topics for an audience that you want to reach?


Then, be selective in your content pitches. Pick media outlets that already publish articles or videos from third-party sources. Ensure the content you want the target media outlets to accept is relevant and told in an interesting (and not promotional) way.

Once you get your content published on a third-party site, promote it. But don’t just mention your company. Instead, note your involvement and share a key point or excerpt while tagging the outlet. They’ll likely appreciate the additional promotion.

Finally, keep track of your content PR wins – and the impact on your brand (i.e., traffic from the articles, overall increased views). After all, that’s what any good publicist would do.


Want more content marketing tips, insights, and examples? Subscribe to workday or weekly emails from CMI.

Cover image by Joseph Kalinowski/Content Marketing Institute

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B2B customer journeys that begin at review sites are significantly shorter



B2B customer journeys that begin at review sites are significantly shorter

The B2B customer journey can be a long one, especially when the purchase of expensive software subscriptions is under consideration.

“The average B2B customer journey takes 192 days from anonymous first touch to won,” according to Dreamdata in their 2022 B2B Go-to-Market Benchmarks — a statistic described by co-founder and CMO Steffen Hedebrandt as “alarming.”

But the report also indicates that this journey can be significantly sped up — by as much as 63% — if accounts begin their research at software review sites, gathering information and opinions from their peers. Journeys that originate at a review site often lead to deals of higher value too.

Fragmented data on the customer journey. Dreamdata is a B2B go-to-market platform. In any B2B company, explained Hedebrandt, there are typically 10 or even 20 data silos that contain fragments of the customer journey. Website visits, white paper downloads, social media interactions, webinar or meeting attendance, demos, and of course intent data from review site visits — this data doesn’t typically sit in one place within an organization.

“We built an account-based data model because we believe that there’s such a thing as an account journey and not an individual journey,” said Hedebrandt. “So if there are two, three or five people representing an account, which is typically what you see in B2B, all of these touches get mapped into the same timeline.”

Among those many touches is the intent data sourced from software review site G2. Dreamdata has an integration with G2 and a G2 dashboard allowing visualization of G2-generated intent data. This includes filtering prospects who are early in their journey, who have not yet discovered the customer’s product, or who have discovered it but are still searching. This creates a basis for attributing pipelines, conversions and revenue to the activity.

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“Strategically, our ideal customer profile is a B2B software-as-a-service company,” said Hedenbrandt. “B2B SaaS companies are particularly ripe for understanding this digital customer journey; their main investment is in digital marketing, they have a salesforce that use software tools to do this inside sales model; and they also deliver their product digitally as well.” What’s more, it takes twice as long to close SaaS deal as it does to close deals with B2B commercial and professional services companies.


Read next: A look at the tech review space

The Benchmarks findings. The conclusions of the 2022 Benchmarks report is based on aggregated, anonymized data from more than 400 Dreamdata user accounts. Focusing on first-touch attribution (from their multi-touch model), Dreamdata found that customer journeys where a review site is the first touch are 63% shorter than the average. In contrast, where the first touch channel is social, the journey is much longer than average (217%); it’s the same when paid media is the first touch (155%).

As the Benchmarks report suggests, this may well mean that social is targeting prospects that are just not in-market. It makes sense that activity on a review site is a better predictor of intent.

Hedenbrandt underlines the importance of treating the specific figures with caution. “It’s not complete science what we’ve done,” he admits, “but it’s real data from 400 accounts, so it’s not going to be completely off. You can only spend your time once, and at least from what we can see here it’s better to spend your time collecting reviews than writing another Facebook update.”

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While Dreamdata highlights use of G2, Hedenbrandt readily concedes that competitor software review sites might reasonably be expected to show similar effects. “Definitely I would expect it to be similar.”

Why we care. It’s not news that B2B buyers researching software purchases use review sites and that those sites gather and trade in the intent data generated. Software vendors encourage users to post reviews. There has been a general assumption that a large number of hopefully positive reviews is a good thing to have.

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What Dreamdata’s findings indicate is that the effect of review sites on the buyer journey — especially as the first-touch channel — can be quantified and a value placed on it. “None of us questioned the value of reviews, but during this process you can actually map it into a customer journey where you can see the journey started from G2, then flowed into sales meetings, website visits, ads, etc. Then we can also join the deal value to the intent that started from G2.”

Likely, this is also another example of B2B learning from B2C. People looking at high consideration B2C purchases are now accustomed to seeking advice both from friends and from online reviews. The same goes for SaaS purchases, Hedenbrandt suggests: “More people are turning to sites like G2 to understand whether this is a trustworthy vendor or not. The more expensive it is, the more validation you want to see.”

About The Author


Kim Davis is the Editorial Director of MarTech. Born in London, but a New Yorker for over two decades, Kim started covering enterprise software ten years ago. His experience encompasses SaaS for the enterprise, digital- ad data-driven urban planning, and applications of SaaS, digital technology, and data in the marketing space.

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He first wrote about marketing technology as editor of Haymarket’s The Hub, a dedicated marketing tech website, which subsequently became a channel on the established direct marketing brand DMN. Kim joined DMN proper in 2016, as a senior editor, becoming Executive Editor, then Editor-in-Chief a position he held until January 2020.

Prior to working in tech journalism, Kim was Associate Editor at a New York Times hyper-local news site, The Local: East Village, and has previously worked as an editor of an academic publication, and as a music journalist. He has written hundreds of New York restaurant reviews for a personal blog, and has been an occasional guest contributor to Eater.

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