When you’re operating a small business, it’s wise to try to take advantage of any possible publicity or exposure that you can get. However, many small businesses worry about interacting with media outlets. Especially if you don’t have any experience with this type of communication or relationship, it can be intimidating to try to figure out how to speak with media outlets and use their reach to your advantage.
To help you in managing these potential opportunities, here are three tips for dealing with local media outlets as a small local business.
Just as you want to make it easy for your customers or clients to contact you when they want to use your services, Joshua Sophy, a contributor to Small Business Trends, shares that you also want it to be easy for media outlets to contact you, too.
In addition to having the number or email address that people will contact you for services, like if you’re running an a/c repair business or offering a beauty service, you may want to have contact information specific for interacting with the media. This way, when you notice that you’ve been contacted in this way, you can be sure you respond quickly and not let that communication get lost in all the other messages you’ve been sent about your business.
When you’re interacting with reporters or other media people and organizations, it can be scary knowing that you’re putting your business in the public eye. But whether you’re being asked questions about something exciting with your business or something that may be more controversial, Elizabeth Victor, a contributor to BPlans.com, advises that you always speak honestly.
While you might think stretching the truth won’t be damaging to your business, if media outlets catch wind of this or feel that you’re not being transparent with them, it can severely ruin your reputation as well as your relationship with those people or media outlets.
For many small businesses, it can be intimidating to reach out to media outlets and ask for exposure for your business. But while media outlets have a lot of different stories they can tell, Katharine Paljug, a contributor to Business News Daily, shares that most media outlets love working with and sharing stories about small businesses.
Usually, small businesses can give a great perspective on the local economy while simultaneously creating a story with heart. So because people love supporting local businesses, reporters also love covering these types of stories, too.
If you’re nervous about dealing with your local media outlets as a small business, consider using the tips mentioned above to help you figure out this part of your business.