When you get media coverage from CNN (like I just did — see below), you may want to party like a princess, but when it comes to business stay credible. How do you do that? Reputation and {{clearing throat}} public relations. Many business owners confuse advertising with publicity. The single most important thing you can do for your business is establish credibility. One way to do that is to support the media when they’re writing the news with great sound-bites so they mention you in the news. What makes a great sound-bite? Educational value. Period. It’s not “sales.” It’s not “promotion.” It’s not talking about yourself and your company. It’s simply, education. What can you say when you’re being interviewed by the media to educate the audience reading, listening or watching? If you make a difference with that audience member, by providing them an extra morsel of knowledge, you will make a lasting impression (both with the media contact and their audience, ie: fans) and in turn, they will click-through to your website, sign up for what you’re offering and in-the-end, maybe even purchase something from you. The first piece of business though, is to get quoted. That takes being in front of the media day-in and day-out. Stay in touch with the media you want to cover you. If you don’t have time to do it yourself, hire a public relations firm to do it for you. Or use a free service, like PitchRate that sends your email inbox media requests on a daily basis. Then, when you’re called in for an interview, educate don’t promote. When I was asked by CNNMoney.com to be interviewed about the royal wedding, the first thing I did was call my business partner, Drew Gerber, to create educational points (soundbites) for the reporter. We discussed first, what audience would be reading the article. In this case, business owners and entrepreneurs. Then we discussed, what would be on-point for the reporter’s request and what would add value to her readers (business owners and entrepreneurs). You can see the end result in this royal wedding article. I also want you to know the soundbites (educational points) Drew and I created showed up almost verbatim from what we created the day before the interview. See, you cannot control what the media writes or publishes. (If you want that, purchase advertising instead.) However, you can control what you say in an interview and my recommendation is to create value and educate so the reporter is so blown away by what you said, she just has to write it. Media seek sources and they gravitate toward credible sources who do not self-promote, but rather add value and education (and sometimes even entertainment) to their reporting. So party like a princess — but after your interview! The night before your interview, write out educational tips and then get to bed so you’re fresh-faced for a great interview. Then toast some champagne the night of the article’s publication. Like my business partner and I will be doing tonight and during our royal wedding party designed to raise funds for a local animal shelter providing me my Siberian husky and Drew his cocker spaniel. You’re not raising money for charity at your royal wedding party? What? Well, that’s another blog entry. So stay tuned. Until then, I hope you raise a glass of champagne this weekend for me, because I’ll be partying like a princess my friend. It’s not every day you get mentioned by CNN.

Filed under: Uncategorized Tagged: advertising vs. pr, CNN, CNNMoney.com and pr, credibility with PR, Kate Middleton family business, Party Pieces, public relations, publicity, royal wedding, soundbites