If you’re looking for a cost-effective way to drive more traffic to your store and land more sales, you need to learn how to get free media coverage. Even dropshippers can find a way to captivate a journalist with a story so compelling that it lands them in a publication. This article covers everything from press kit examples to tips for getting media coverage so that your store’s sales can skyrocket with free publicity.
While most dropshippers avoid getting media coverage, it’s possible to get media coverage even if you’re selling the same product as everyone else. Online stores like Amazon and Walmart sell dropshipped goods on their websites. And they’re regularly featured in articles. It isn’t what you sell that lands the media coverage, but how you sell it. What’s the story behind your brand? What do you do differently? What good have you been doing in your community? Explore how to differentiate your brand from your competitors.
Why Your Store Needs Media Coverage
Media coverage can help your brand gain credibility, grow sales, and build an online presence.
If the media covers your brand in an article, you’re given credibility. Journalists are picky about which brands they cover. If they feature you in an article it’s because you’ve done or said something that’s newsworthy. And you’re worth talking about!
Media coverage can also help you grow. If you contact publications about your product and they choose to feature it in an article, readers will be directed to your website to buy it. Depending on the size of the publication you pitch, you could gain a lot of new visitors back to your website that you might not normally market to.
While having a website and social media pages can help you establish an audience, having others recommending your store and products gives you an even wider reach. The more people you get talking about your brand, the bigger you become.
Should You Create a Press Kit?
A press kit is a file or webpage with your brand’s information. You might include a company bio, executive bio, key figure and business contact information, your brand’s logo, the number of social media followers your brand has, customer demographics, past media coverage, details about company revenue, accomplishments and more. The press kit is valuable to reporters but it’s also of interest to investors and other key figures.
New store owners likely won’t add a press kit to their stores in the beginning, however, as you begin to grow, you’ll likely need to add a media kit to your website for reporters. Many top brands choose to include a press kit on the footer of their website for easy accessibility.
Media Kit Template
If you have design skills, you can create your own media kit in Photoshop. However, those who are less design savvy can download an affordable media kit template online that suits their branding.
Canva’s media kit template is perfect for store owners on a budget. You’ll be able to modify the look of the template to match your brand while having a user-friendly professional design. The graphics and images used in the template may cost you (usually $1 a graphic), but if you replace them with your own images they’ll be free. There are countless media kit templates that you can choose from making it a great resource to check out.
Graphic River’s media kit templates are great for mid-sized stores looking to create a stellar media kit. The best ones tend to cost between $17-$25. They offer several pages in a unified look so that you can dive into more detail about your brand.
Hip Media Kits offers a great selection of media kit templates. They’re edgy and they look great. At $28.99 each, they’re still affordable for mid-sized businesses who don’t want to hire a professional to design their media kit.
Press Kit Examples
You can design and layout your media kit in a variety of ways. Here are a few press kit examples you can use as inspiration for your store.
SofiaZakia explains who their brand is, who the designer is, their favorite products and more on their press kit. The page is visually stimulating with stunning photographs throughout making it easy to read through. They’ve injected their brand’s personality into the media kit.
Fabletics shows off their brand’s media clippings in their press section. They include information about their founder Kate Hudson and their brand’s story on the same page. By showcasing the popular publications featuring their products, journalists may be more willing to feature Fabletics’ products in articles they write.
Michaels uses a text heavy approach to their media kit. They share their company’s story, successes, and include key information such as their publicist’s contact information and company headquarters.
H&M’s press kit includes a series of blog content where they share partnerships, retail openings, press conference details, and more.
How to Get Free Media Coverage
Getting media coverage doesn’t have to be hard. Whether you create a newsworthy story, contact a reporter, or follow-up to a reporter’s request, you can strengthen your relationships with journalists while increasing your brand’s press coverage.
Reach out to blogs and publications. If there’s a popular blog within your niche that everyone loves or a magazine that regularly features products you sell, reach out. You can send a tweet to the person who writes the articles if you don’t have access to their email. Build a relationship with them first. Share their content. Talk to them about the industry. Recommend other (non-competitive) products they might like. Once you’ve built rapport, you should recommend your products and brand to them.
Help A Reporter Out, also known as HARO, is a popular tool used by publicists, journalists and business owners. Journalists seeking experts for a story will post a request on the platform. HARO sends out three emails a day per category with several different story requests. Categories include: Business & Finance, Lifestyle & Fitness, High Tech, Travel, General and more. Over 55,000 journalists have used HARO making it the most popular platform for journalists seeking content for their articles.
Tips for Getting Media Coverage
If you’ve tried to get media coverage in the past but struggled to get a response, these tips will help you make a connection and get featured.
Send personalized emails: Email the exact person you need to get in touch with. Like mentioned earlier, you can reach out on Twitter if you have to. Don’t send an email to the wrong person. If you’re contacting the beauty columnist when you sell yoga pants, your email will get ignored. When emailing a journalist, address them by first name. Don’t send generic sir/miss emails because it makes it seem like you’re sending everyone the same email.
Check out publications’ editorial calendars: Popular publications like Cosmopolitan, Instyle, etc. all have editorial calendars that they share online. Take a look at Instyle’s Editorial Calendar — it states the topics they cover each week according to the season. You’ll need to contact them 2-3 months in advance to have your product featured in one of their stories so plan ahead.
Start with smaller publications: Everyone wants to be featured in popular publications like Forbes or Cosmopolitan. However, most people don’t land the coveted publications on their first try. You need to start with smaller to medium sized blogs and magazines. Establish a name for yourself. Build an audience on social media. Grow your sales to an impressive number and before you know it the big publications will be reaching out to you. Build up to your goal.
Do something different and quirky: If everyone goes left, go right. Take an unpopular stance. Do something in a completely different way. Let your brand’s personality shine through. Most businesses offer mediocre customer service. Offer customer service so amazing that everyone talks about it. Instead of doing what everyone else is doing, do what everyone isn’t willing to do.
Respond to journalist requests quickly: When a journalist contacts you about your product or brand, respond to them immediately. They often have tight deadlines that they need to meet. Waiting to respond to an email or phone call can be what results in them featuring your competitor instead.
Offer a free product sample so they can see your product: When contacting a journalist, offer a free product sample so they can test out your product, feel the material, or smell the fragrance. Having a product in front of you is a very different experience than looking at a picture online. By giving a free samples, journalists will be better able to determine whether or not it fits in their article. Be sure not to bribe journalists with free gifts or products that are above $50 in value.
Share their article after it’s been posted: After you’ve been featured in an article, share it with your audience and tag them thanking them for the feature. It shows that you appreciate the work they’ve done which will make them more likely to contact you again in the future. After you share the article, stay in touch with them.
Master media monitoring: Media monitoring is the act of monitoring Google for any media coverage. You can use tools like Google Alerts where you can add your brand name and have Google email you every time your brand appears in their search engine. It allows you to know who’s writing about you without having to Google yourself. Best part: it’s free to use.
Have you tried getting media coverage for your store? Share your results with us in the comments!