Friday, 02 January 2009 14:20

Media Promotion

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By contacting local media outlets (radio, TV, newspapers, etc) you may discover that you can obtain a vast amount of free publicity for your cemetery event. However, in order to obtain this publicity it will require a fair amount of work on the part of someone. Here's what you need to do to gain the most publicity for your event:


Designate a media coordinator in your family, group or organization to serve as the primary contact for all media inquiries. You will benefit from having one person develop relationships with the media, and will be assured that the correct information reaches everyone. Any information on the event that you wish to make known should be passed on to this designated media coordinator.

Prepare a complete list of all radio and television stations in your community (including cable), daily and weekly newspapers, magazines, online news forums and community newsletters. Call the media and identify a reporter/editor who would be interested in cemetery preservation news and issues.. Include education, real estate and architecture editors, assignment editors, feature writers and the editorial page editor.

Plan your cemetery  event so that it will generate the most media interest. Make plans  that are visual and involve a number of participants. Invite local, county and state officials. Invite the press. Prepare a media advisory, answering who, what, when, where and why. Send it out at least one full week in advance.

Follow up your advisory with a personal phone call to each reporter or editor to remind them of upcoming events. Keep it fresh in their minds.

Prepare a news release to distribute at your event and to send to press that cannot attend. Releases should be concise and factual, typed on your organization's stationery. You should be sure to include a headline, release date, contact name and phone, a brief description of your organization, and what you hope to accomplish at this event.

Set up an interview for your designated media coordinator or spokesperson with a local radio or television talk show. Many broadcast stations have programs that focus on community and public affairs issues; they are often taped in advance to air on Saturday and Sunday mornings. Call at least three to four weeks in advance. Ask whether there will be other guests and how long the segment will last so you can be better prepared.

Get your activities into radio, television and cable community calendars. Call each station and ask for the public service announcement (PSA) director who is responsible for informing the public about community events. Send them 15- or 30-second scripts about your activities. Include an interesting lead sentence with basic information about the event, location, time and phone number for more information. For accuracy, make sure you read your script aloud and time yourself with a stopwatch.

Develop a list of newspapers, newsletters and magazines that publish community calendars. Contact those editors to determine publication deadlines and submit pertinent information about your event (date, time, brief description of event, fees, contact name and number).
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