Why work with the media?
Red Bullet To achieve maximum exposure and publicity for your group's message or event.
Red Bullet To effectively communicate to target audiences why they should care about your issue and how they can get involved.
Red Bullet Positive media relations can amount to invaluable, free advertising for your agency or cause!


Getting effective coverage

Red Bullet Look for Opportunities to link child welfare to issues in your community. Be creative! Economic downturns link to quality child care; welfare reform can be linked to the need for quality child care.
Red Bullet Know your contacts. Watch local newspapers and television shows to identify key reporters who cover children's issues. Go beyond the feature writers and lifestyle reporters. Include the business reporter, editorial reporter, and hard news reporters in your media efforts.
Red Bullet Become a resource. Establish yourself as a good source of reliable information.
Red Bullet Write a letter to the editor. They are among the most highly read features in a newspaper. Tie your letter to a current community issue or link your letter to a recent story in the news. Keep it short and to the point. If your letter comments on a news article, submit it as quickly as possible after the story appears.
Red Bullet Submit an op-ed column. This is a guest editorial, usually longer than a letter to the editor, written from an expert perspective rather than a general reader.
Red Bullet Meet with your newspaper's editorial board. Editorials can be very influential and editorial boards determine what the editorials will say. Make a point of getting to know the editorial board members and supplying them with information about you and your organization.
Red Bullet Take to the airwaves. Volunteer to be an expert on a local call-in show or to respond to calls from parents.
Red Bullet Take advantage of seasonal opportunities. Tie your issue to a certain time of year or holiday and you are more likely to get coverage. For example, holidays are great for discussing safe toys for children.
Red Bullet Give a local perspective to national news. As national stories break, provide local reporters with information on how the story affects children or programs locally.
Red Bullet Keep talking! The more you brainstorm for opportunities to keep your issues in the news and the more reporters see you and your organization as a reliable source for information, the more coverage you will get.

Next Page > Tools of the trade > Page 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, Table of Contents