Public Relations

Countering the Holiday News Blitz

By Affect Team | On October 25, 2013

Halloween is upon us, and you know what that means? For some, it’s candy and treats, but for PR pros, it marks the beginning of the holiday season. The last few months of the year are a special time for many of us: family comes into town, turkey dinners are cooked and we get to re-watch all of our favorite Claymation movies.

But for PR professionals, it means one thing: editors and reporters are going holiday-crazy. Stories that have anything to do with any of the holidays that occur around this time (Festivus, anybody?) will take precedent over most other news. If you’re in the business of selling holiday goods, it’s a great time for you—but what about the rest of us? Many B2B, technology and healthcare companies won’t have holiday news to report, but that doesn’t mean they can’t still get some great coverage. Here are a few ideas to help you avoid (or jump into) the holiday media blitz:

Reach out to friendlies: You have probably spent the whole year cultivating these great relationships with reporters and editors, and now is the time to utilize them. If you have a release that could use more pick-up or general company news, reach out to your friendlies first—it will save time and frustration.

Look at trade publications: In B2B, tech and healthcare, there are a LOT of trade publications. It boggles the mind how many outlets there are out there, and the holidays are a great time to tap into those. Look at all of the trade outlets in your vertical for some new contacts and new angles that aren’t being overshadowed by the jolly man in the red suit

Pick up the phone: Here at Affect, we are huge advocates for phone pitching—while it may be a little more daunting than email, getting the reporter on the phone will give you a chance to infuse your personality into the pitch and offer the reporter a bit more color than you can via e-mail.

If all else fails, roll with the holiday blitz: Is there a way you can give your story a holiday angle? Better yet, can your client’s next release have a holiday angle to it? Perhaps it’s a holiday survey, or a holiday customer report; just because you don’t necessarily sell to consumers, doesn’t mean you can’t jump in on the holiday fun.

The holidays can be a stressful time for PR pros: between working under stricter and more urgent deadlines and trying to get into a very crowded space, it may seem like you’ll never get your client out of the holiday media blitz. But rest assured, with diligence, LOTS of follow up and a bit of that holiday spirit, this too, shall pass.

What are your thoughts on the “Holiday Media Blitz?” Let us know in the comments!

Affect Team

As VP of HR & Operations, Regina Pyne is responsible for running the day-to-day operations at Affect, including finding ways to make the company more productive through its business operations and human resource management. She also handles recruiting for the agency; creating and implementing policies; staff development and management; benefits and contract management and operations management. Before transitioning to her role in HR and Operations, Regina worked on the client side as an Account Supervisor, where she managed PR accounts and provided strategic counsel to B2B technology and healthcare clients.