Do you guarantee placements or are the placements earned?
If you have a newsworthy story and good spokesperson, you don’t need “guaranteed” placements. All “guaranteed” placements are is purchased advertising time. There’s no “great relationship” the company you are talking to has with these networks or stations. If you have a strong story, your news should air in news and public affairs programming. If you can picture how it will be heard or seen in news and public affairs programming, that’s where it should be.
How will my story be pitched?
Some companies blast out pitches to hundreds of reporters at a time. Some do send personal emails, but then are too afraid to pick up the phone to follow up on the pitch they sent. Some will call, but will offer three additional interviews at the same time as yours, so the reporter is almost “choosing” between all experts offered. Our pitching is all done on by each individual story, and gets the attention it deserves. Therefore, the reporter is considering your story based on its merits alone.
How do you report ROI and listenership details?
This question is critically important to ask. You need to know what you’ll be presenting to your board, your C-Suite, or your client at the end of the outreach to gauge impact. What does the firm’s reporting and follow up process look like? Will you receive airchecks? Do they get back in touch with each reporter to determine how a story was used? Do they purchase their listenership data directly from a reliable source? How often is that data updated?
How does pricing work?
Some companies in the broadcast media relations space will sell in chunks of time. For example, a “4-hour radio media tour,” where you pay one set price, no matter how many interviews are scheduled in those four hours. Some firms charge by interview, so you’re only paying for what you get. Do they charge you for airchecks? What about to do a media training beforehand? It’s important to ask this from the start to make sure the firm is being transparent and upfront about the budget.