What’s the first thing that comes to mind when you think about the local media? For many companies they think ‘small time’ or ‘not worth the investment’. To put it bluntly, which is 100% the 8THIRTYFOUR way, you’re wrong. Local publications can ABSOLUTELY be more valuable for your brand than the Wall Street Journal or The Today Show. Before you get all worked up, we’re not saying national coverage isn’t important, we’re saying: start local. All coverage leads back to local.
It builds trust.
As a business owner, you know better than anyone that trust is key to success. If your target audience doesn’t trust your product or service, they’re not going to buy it. Local media outlets are often seen as trusted sources of information in their communities. By getting positive coverage from them, you’re essentially tapping into a goldmine of trust. If potential customers see that a local media outlet is writing about your brand or if someone within your organization is quoted as an expert, they’re more likely to trust you as well.
It leads to national coverage
We love, just love, when clients come to us with requests to be on with Lester Holt or to chat with Savannah and Jenna. To which we reply, “aren’t you just the most precious thing, bless your heart.”
You can’t come out of the gate and expect coverage on the national level if you’ve spent absolutely no time building relationships locally. Most media outlets are part of larger media companies, for example WZZM 13 is part of Gannett and Crain’s Grand Rapids Business is part of Crain’s Communication. If you garner coverage locally, you’ve got a much better chance of your story or news being picked up nationally.
It’s cost-effective and it just makes sense
Ok, point 3 is really two points but we’re trying to keep this short or shorter. If you’re working with a PR firm (and you should be), pursuing local coverage is going to be more affordable for you because most agencies have great relationships with community reporters. A lot of large national publications use freelancers, which means they change out frequently thus making it harder for PR agencies to build long-lasting relationships with them.
Another thing to note is billboards and TV commercials can cost a pretty penny, while getting coverage from local media outlets, if you have an actual story, costs nothing.
It creates a buzz
Yes, we know using the word “buzz” is a bit of a buzzword…but it’s true. People love to talk about local businesses – good or bad. Take the CEO of Miller Knoll for example, she’s created quite the little controversy for herself around empolyee bonuses. It’s kind of hard to feel bad for someone when their base salary is $1.1 mil a year. Soo….we digress.
The point is, a positive story in a local publication can lead to increased foot traffic in your store or more website visits. Building the “local buzz” can lead to increased business and better PR opportunities in the future.
In a world where trust is everything, investing in local media can be the key to building brand credibility for your company. In the day and age of “fake news,” local publications have proven themselves to be more reliable and trustworthy than a lot of national outlets. Don’t underestimate the value of local coverage, it will lead to more recognition and better relationships with your existing and future customers.