How Authors and Experts Can Build Rapport with Media

Building Rapport with the Media

January is all about new beginnings: new habits, new resolutions, a new you, and new strategies for your book that work. As an author looking for visibility for your book, your ability to build relationships with the appropriate media is essential.

This is something I have focused on my entire career, and am happy to say that when starting work with a client, there is a whole host of media who will listen to my pitch and very often will say yes because they trust me. I built rapport with them and in addition, they know that I know what they’re looking for in terms of a guest or source. Since I have brought them excellent sources in the past, they know that will likely happen in the future.

Building rapport with the media is a crucial aspect of an author’s publicity strategy. It can lead to more coverage and opportunities to reach a broader audience, plus establish a relationship you can go back to again and again.

Today we’re focusing on key strategies authors can use to establish and maintain a positive relationship with media professionals. Here are a few of them.

Understand Their Needs: I can’t tell you how often this does NOT happen. Authors send misdirected pitches all the time, and not only is this annoying, it’s a good way to get a media pro to ignore everything you send. Instead, you want to research and understand what kind of content the media outlets and journalists in your genre are looking for. Tailor your pitches to align with their interests and the needs of their audience. Journalists appreciate when you show that you understand their beat and can provide them with relevant and timely content. You would be amazed how often this is ignored.

Personalize Your Communication: Avoid sending generic pitches to a long list of contacts. Take the time to personalize your communication. Address the journalists by name, reference their previous work that you found insightful, and explain why your story is relevant to their audience. Personalization shows respect for their work and can set you apart from other authors. Also, don’t be too generic in your personalization. Saying, “I really love your show and know you are helping so many other people,” is too vague. Say specifically what content you appreciated. This means you actually did watch, read, or listen to their content.

Be a Reliable Source: Always be prompt, professional, and prepared in your interactions. If a journalist reaches out for a comment or interview, respond quickly. If you promise to send additional information or materials, do so in a timely manner. Being reliable builds trust and makes journalists more likely to work with you in the future.

Engage on Social Media: Follow journalists and media outlets on social media. Engage with their content in a meaningful way by sharing, commenting, and offering insights. This can help to put your name on their radar in a positive context.

Provide Value in Every Interaction: Whether it’s a compelling story idea, expert commentary on a current event, or insights from your book, ensure that every interaction with the media provides value. Help them see you as a resource who can enhance their content.

Maintain the Relationship: Building rapport with the media is not just about getting coverage for your current book. It’s about developing a lasting professional relationship. Keep in touch with journalists even when you don’t have something to promote. Congratulate them on their achievements, share relevant articles, and stay engaged with their work.

Be Authentic and Respectful: Authenticity goes a long way in building rapport. Be yourself and let your passion for your work show. At the same time, respect their time and boundaries. Understand that they are often working under tight deadlines and may not always have the bandwidth to cover your story.

Attend Industry Events: Participate in industry events, book fairs, and conferences where you can meet media professionals in person. Face-to-face interactions can be very effective for building rapport.

Bottom line

Building rapport with the media is a gradual process that requires consistency, professionalism, and a mutual understanding of value. I know this can be challenging in our instant gratification world, but some things really do take time. By nurturing these relationships, authors can create a network of media contacts that can be beneficial for their current and future projects.

To  your success!


P.S. Good Things Just Take Time







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