How to create news when there is no news

Action Therapy Dog

When creating ‘buzz’ around a brand, one of the key aspects is ensuring that brand is mentioned in the media as much as possible. Not only this, but that it is reaching lots of different ‘pockets’ of media too. Coverage isn’t just limited to national newspapers (although those do tend to be the favourites). Sometimes it’s important for a brand to be featured in particular types of press which reach different audiences. But what do you do if your brand doesn’t have any news to share? Can you still get those much-coveted column inches month after month?

Yes! But it requires a little outside-the-box thinking. That’s where a PR agency starts to get creative with interesting angles and collaboration ideas.

Here are three examples of these angles and ideas that PR professionals use to get brands into the media spotlight:

Hook onto Awareness Days

Things like Veganuary, Movember – even World Compliment Day! These are all awareness campaigns created by PR’s to get people talking about a certain topic. Other brands and PR agencies are now learning how to align with awareness days to continue the conversation.

For example, an obvious one is a plant-based brand collaborating with a famous vegan chef for Veganuary. It works because it’s a great way to show synergy between the brand, the chef’s creative direction and what both can offer audiences during this key calendar date. Not to mention this has both advertising, event and PR capabilities.

However, there is also the opportunity to think outside the box using awareness days. A past event of ours (and one of our all-time favourite PR campaigns) was the collaboration between leisure operator Everyone Active and Therapy Dogs Nationwide to provide stress-relief to Londoners during Stress Awareness Week. Not only did both brands become newsworthy during this week, (check out the coverage on The Metro) it also provided a (fluffy and friendly) service to Londoners in need of a pick-me-up! We’ve done many collaborations in the past based on awareness days as they receive great feedback and press.

PR professionals will continue to use them to showcase a brands’ fluidity and ability to keep surprising audiences.

Introduce Statistics and Research

The British media is notoriously cynical and reserved about sensational stories and claims. It’s one of the differentiators between UK and US press – our journalists are not bought easily by dazzling brand stories and unsolicited claims. What the UK press love, is research and studies. If your brand has got statistics and scientific research to support key ideas within your industry and / or brand, you’ll have a shoe in the door.

For example, we work closely with global group exercise provider, Les Mills. As juggernauts in the fitness industry, Les Mills knows a thing or two about what makes a group exercise class successful. Instead of launching new (and perhaps novelty) classes to the world, Les Mills puts its energy into scientific research that backs their existing classes. For example, a recent study by Les Mills in collaboration with a University, showed that doing more than 30-40mins of peak heartrate HIIT training per week, can be detrimental to health. (Further details on the study here, if you’re interested).

This information shared with media on behalf of Les Mills shows that the brand is serious about giving audiences and customers information that can be backed by experts and officials, not just fancy new classes for commercial profit.

Align a Brand in Classic Round Ups

Notably for lifestyle and consumer press, doing softer articles with product, service and / or event round ups is a good way to give audiences options across a variety of brands. For example, the Evening Standard has its ‘LIST’ in every lifestyle section of the newspaper. In this, the journalists will pick themes and their favourite brands of the moment to be included. For example, checkout Time Out’s Yoga Classes in London roundup, where our client MoreYoga is mentioned.

From a PR perspective, it’s a clever way to include your client’s brand whilst aligning it with other like-minded or respectable competitors. Some other examples of including your brand in a round up is to align it with others during awareness weeks. For example, ‘The best free meditation events for Stress Awareness Month’ may be an article press write during April’s annual event – and a great way for brands to host these sorts of events and be included in this round up.

In a day and age where the number of journalists is decreasing, it works in a PR agency’s favour to help them by creating content they can share with audiences in next to no time. Making it topical helps.

Do you need help getting your brand noticed? Get in touch, we can help!

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