Becoming a media source is important for small business owners. It’s a good way to market and increase sales and position yourself as an expert in your field. Being quoted in the right media channels can increase your exposure as you build your trustworthiness and that of your brand. Small Business Trends spoke with Matt Kneller, managing director at Qwoted, to find out how the platform can make this possible. Included are some additional points on what you should be doing generally.
Media Source Tips
If you want to be thought of as credible, you’ll need to follow a few simple rules. The following are a few tips that can put you in front of media outlets and journalists.
Develop Relationships with Journalists
Ask anyone and they will tell you that good business means fostering and developing relationships. That’s important if you want to be a media source. Here are a few things you can do to introduce yourself as a prospective expert.
Journalists look to social media to find sources. Having a content marketing strategy that you follow through on is a good idea. Publishing new posts and blogs helps to position you as an expert reporters will look to as a reliable source.
Getting a journalist to read your pitch is another part of the secret sauce. Do some research and find out the topics the reporter covers first. Get their email address and make sure to use email as the first point of contact. Never use a generic greeting like “To Whom It May Concern.”
For more tips, read: 28 Ways To Get Your Business Media Attention
Give Them Data
Journalists are looking for information they can use. Good story ideas will get you halfway to being respected. However, there is more to it. You need to round out a pitch with newsworthy data. There are a few factors to look at to decide if your data meets the criteria and it includes timing. This means the numbers and statistics you present need to be current. Why, because people online are used to getting the latest numbers.
Looking for creative ways to get social media data for media opportunities? Check out this HubSpot blog
Get Good at Talking in Sound Bites
If you want to be an expert with good credentials, you need to remember you are talking to the media. One of the best ways to do that is to talk in soundbites. Or, you should offer quotes that can be easily placed into a print story.
A good way to do that is to map out what you want to say or write beforehand. Get to the point quickly and use active voice. Remember, the best content uses metaphors.
Seek Out Some Media Training
If you want to be considered on Qwoted, keep in mind each expert is vetted. The more professional you are, the better your chances are of attracting queries from reporters. Getting some media training is a good idea because it will develop your confidence. Developing professional interview skills allows you to define your message and in turn it makes you valuable to reporters.
Less Chance of Being Misquoted
One of the simple facts here is the more training you have, the less chance you have of being misquoted. Getting media training helps you be effective and clear with your communications.
Learn to Write Press Releases
Like the name suggests, the press release is an announcement from a company to the news media. This is a great way to capture a journalist’s attention if you’re looking to get respect as a media source. Here are some tricks people use to write engaging press releases.
Remember to keep things short and simple. You might be tempted to go on and on about your business but don’t. All you need is 300 to 400 words in a good press release. Here’s another good tip, if you can use quotations, they can reinforce the points you’re trying to get across.
Here’s a few press release distribution sites that can help you get the word out, whether it is local or international. It doesn’t matter if your business is as close as Boston or as far away as New Zealand.
Hire a Public Relations Professional
Of course, you don’t need to go about becoming a media source on Qwoted all by yourself. But there’s a few things you should do before hiring a PR company to look after this type of work for you. You need to define your target audience. Knowing what you want to accomplish helps. Finally, you should also ask how the PR company will measure your ROI.
What is Qwoted?
Small Business Trends talked with Matt Kneller, managing director at Qwoted about this service. It provides reputable sources for reporters by supplying vetted experts. It also gives a small business the chance to become a credible media source. They are based in New York.
How Do I Use Qwoted to Become a Media Source?
This service is made up of a network of professionals in a variety of different industries and fields. There’s a global directory of expert sources available. Reporters draw on them and you can become one. Building relationships with top reporters is a great way to establish yourself. It’s a system focusing on business and finance.
Kneller explains how the service has expanded since it started, and how an SMB can benefit.
“As a small business owner in almost any area, you can have something to offer these media users.”
First off, some small business owners don’t have the budget and time to outsource marketing and PR. Qwoted offers an affordable alternative.
Kneller says, “It’s easy to get started, you just need to sign up on our marketing site.”
As a small business owner, you sign up as an expert user. There’s an approval process where the team at Qwoted checks your credentials.
“Once you’re approved you have access to our network. From there, it’s as easy as creating a quick profile.”
The idea here is to highlight your subject matter expertise and any media experience you have. One of the big advantages here is these profiles get hosted in a central database. That’s where reporters go to look for subject matter experts.
“Once you’ve created a profile, you want to keep updating it,” Kneller says. Media sources can add publications they’ve been quoted in.
Typically, reporters reach out directly. Or there are source requests that get matched up with users in the Qwoted New York based network.