Event-driven PSAs, becoming a media resource, and more

How can I get the most from my event-driven PSA?

How can I get the most from my event-driven PSA?
Event-driven PSAs are designed to promote an event occurring on a specific day, or to highlight a specific time period, such as National Sleep Disorder Week or Breast Cancer Awareness Month, explains Annette Minkalis, SVP at West Glen Communications. She suggests two ways of maximizing exposure and budget for these.

Some stations turn PSAs around quickly, notes Minkalis, while others require five or six weeks to get them into rotation, so it is important to give them plenty of lead time.

"Play it safe and ship your PSA six to seven weeks before it should begin airing," she adds. This provides enough time for mailing and also accommodates stations that take longer to review.

Minkalis also recommends sending stations an additional version of your PSA that isn't date-specific along with the dated spot.

"With minor tweaks to the script, your organization can have continued visibility for many months after your special event," she explains. Plus, you might pick up support on stations that couldn't air your "event" spot, but had time later.

Media appearances
I want to get interviewed whenever radio shows are talking about the industry I work in. How do I make sure producers use me as a resource?
Market yourself as an expert and make sure that you're available 24-7, says Kelley Walhof, client services/operations manager at Win Win Radio. It's worthwhile to send producers a brief e-mail that lists your areas of expertise and ideas for show topics.

To highlight your credibility, mention any major media appearances that you have made or related honors that you have received, she notes, adding that you should always provide multiple ways to contact you during the workday and after-hours.

"Many producers work strange hours as they prepare for shows and book guests, so it's important to be available whenever they need you," Walhof advises. It can also be helpful to offer the producer related items for listener giveaways - like a dozen books, CDs, or free consultations.

Celebrities and events
Does it help to think outside the box when picking a celebrity for your event?
It's a good idea to be open-minded when choosing a celebrity for a particular event, says Glen Rosenblum, president of Celebrity Access. Too often people seek a certain individual because they are closely related with a particular type of product.

"Many times when it is too close a fit, say money and Donald Trump, the audience will feel like they've been there and done that," he points out.

If you're looking for a representative for a jewelry company, Rosenblum suggests being open to celebrities who aren't necessarily associated with glamour.

"Don't be afraid to choose someone so down to earth you can't even imagine them wearing anything sparkling," he suggests. "That to me is more interesting."

It is also important to have faith in the consumer when thinking outside the box like this.

It may take a second for someone to focus on the situation or ad, Rosenblum notes, but in that moment you may hook them, rather than turn them away.

Send your questions to:
toolbox@prweek.com. Please contact Beth Krietsch if you are interested in contributing to PR Toolbox or to suggest ideas for future columns.

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