Product launches are often the pinnacle of an annual marketing plan and one of a brand’s primary newsmaking moments. Getting it right can make or break the launch. At Bader Rutter, we’ve mastered the media relations required to put new products on your customers’ radars. To set your product up for success, follow these three tips.
- Know your editors.
Trade media relies on trusted news sources for big news — and typically the cover stories. You should be continually representing your brand to key industry trade editors through regular media relations, pitching, exclusive trade media field days or events, trade show events, and relationship building. In fact, treat your target reporters and editors like VIPs. Then, when you have a product launch, you have a built-in trusted reporter corps ready to be a conduit to your target audiences.
- When meeting reporters at trade shows, know what they’ve been covering, know the latest industry topics, value their time, and interact personally.
- When pitching exclusives to editors, don't waste their time: Keep pitches brief, and content is king. Reporters are inundated with pitches. Make sure yours is the best they will hear all week. Make it count. Provide multiple sources, market research, and interesting angles they haven't considered. Adding photos, cutlines, and video is a plus.
- Always accompany a print news release or audio news release distribution with individual outreach to each reporter. Don’t let your release get lost in their inboxes.
2. Offer some exclusivity with unique content.
Trade reporters are charged to produce unique content. Often, a new product launch is something your brand wants to shout from the rooftops, so offering exclusive content to certain trade publications may not be an option. Yet, as you prepare for the launch, you can offer reporters access to key players or unique content that feels exclusive.
- Arrange for additional spokespeople to be media-trained and offer key reporters one-on-one opportunities to talk through the product with these key players. Better yet, include industry and association leaders and people who have tested your new product to boost pick up.
- Give editors ample C-suite opportunities when it makes sense — not just a soundbite, but real time with CEOs, COOs, and other integral players in the product and company’s brand story.
- Arrange for on-site visits to see how the new product works or product manufacturing tours.
For all three tips, click here to launch your new product into success.
Lori Hallowell is a vice president/group director at Bader Rutter. She oversees the public relations efforts for one of the agency’s most tenured clients with experience in content planning, strategy, media relations and reputation management. For more than twenty years, she has led teams to help clients discover, create and amplify brand stories.