MeIf I say PR what do you think of? Publicity? News coverage and magazine articles? As solopreneurs we focus on growing our audience and providing valuable content for them, but an overlooked tool in our arsenal is public relations (PR).

Haddy Folivi, founder of Clarity Media, is here to give us practical and actionable tips for getting more press coverage for our businesses, and she also helps us see the value in doing so. She even walks us through the steps of creating a pitch! Listen in for all of that and more on the 203rd episode of The Solopreneur Hour.

More About This Show

One of the things that makes Haddy so great at what she does is her roots. Haddy got her first taste of the PR world when she was on the other side of the coin: she was a journalist. In college her main journalistic focus was music. She interviewed and wrote about such stars as Usher, Destiny’s Child (and even the long-since-forgotten Sisqo and his Thong Song).

Like so many university students she worked tirelessly. She went to class all day, came home for a quick bite to eat and then ran off to the next concert she was covering that night. Then she’d get up at 4 or 5am to write about that same concert, before going off to a full day of class.

Her tenacity paid off when she landed a job in a large PR firm after finishing her degree. She quickly worked her way up from entry-level tea-fetcher to a valuable, contributing member of the firm. But by the time they figured out what a catch she was, Haddy had her exit strategy in place and off she went. She freelanced for a bit and then took a job with a non-media company for the next 5 years. And that time cemented what she already knew: she was unemployable.

More About This Show:

  • How she knew she was unemployable.
  • Should you outsource your public relations tasks?
  • What’s the fastest success story she’s ever helped create for a client?
  • How long should you wait after emailing your pitch before following up?
  • The hashtag to use to find out what journalists are in need of right now.
  • And SO much more!

After her last gig, she went out on her own. She knew she could offer the same level of expertise and success that other, larger and more impersonal firms were offering and she could it with a human touch. That was the origin of Clarity Media and she hasn’t looked back since!

On today’s show she applies the wisdom she’s gained over the last 17 years to help us understand the value in public relations and how simple it is to send out a pitch, and how to effectively craft and follow-up your pitch for successful media coverage. It’s a whole lot simpler than you might think and she walks us through the basic steps., which we’ll get to in a minute.

In terms of the value PR provides for you, there is plenty. It lends credibility and also expands your audience, without having to spend money on advertising. You’re reaching a targeted audience and being positioned as an authority on the subject. It’s a win-win all around.

And it’s also what you do after you get the coverage that really matters. Be sure to add it to your Bio page or your About page on your website, that page should be a living and breathing document that you are always expanding and adding to. The more coverage you get, the more coverage you’ll be able to secure in the future. It builds on itself until eventually the press is coming to YOU rather than you hunting them!

Now that you understand the value PR adds for your business, let’s look at the steps to crafting and submitting a successful pitch. The first thing to do is to find your contact information. Whatever publication you are contacting just go to their web site and look under Contact Us or the editorial section. You should find a few sentences that talk about where to submit story ideas. That is the email address you want.

With that info in hand, you can now write your pitch. It will be short: 3-4 lines tops. The first sentence or two will introduce you, your background and your accomplishment. The next line will be about what you want to offer them, why you want to offer it to them and the benefit it will provide. Finally you’ll conclude with a call to action.

When you listen to this episode you’ll hear us create a specific pitch for The Solopreneur Hour as it relates to Forbes. While it is about me and this show, take notes and write your own pitch as we’re creating one live in this episode. You’ll be surprised by how easy it is to do so!

Although we talk about several other topics on today’s show, I’ll leave you with one more here: headlines. Haddy’s suggestions for writing great headlines are to tailor it to the audience, make it snappy, don’t overuse the “how to” and “7 ways” type headlines. And finally, write a headline you’d be interested in reading! If it doesn’t speak to you, write something else.

Haddy and I also discuss how to follow up once you’ve submitted your pitch, the questions to ask if they reject your inquiry, and how to find current trending topics (including the Twitter hashtag you need to know)…and TONS more. Listen in to get the goods! Thanks to Haddy for being on the show and thank you for tuning in. We’ll see you next time on The Solopreneur Hour.

As a special thanks from Haddy she’s giving all listeners a discount on her Publicity Overload course. Check it out here.

Episode Resources

Clarity Media web site
Clarity Media on Twitter
HARO: Help a Reporter Out
Publicity Overload course
Proudly Unemployable, the Facebook group
SoloLab: A Unique Mastermind
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