8 steps to get your product-based business featured in the press

Do you want to see your business and products featured in the press, but don’t know where

to start?


In this blog post, we share the key steps when it comes to doing your own PR -

from what imagery you need to magazine lead times.


Pitching your business and products to the press might seem daunting, however, remember

that the press love to hear from small businesses just like yours. In fact, they rely on product

suggestions and pitches from brands in order to fill their shopping pages and produce

content. It’s a win-win kind of relationship.


There is plenty of different type of press features - ranging from interviews to brick and

mortar spotlights, however, in this blog, we’ll focus on product-focused features specifically.

If you run a product-based business and are keen to make more people aware of your

offering, then product placement press is a great starting point. And once you’re into the

swing of PR (which is much more manageable than you think it is), then you can widen your

PR strategy and focus.


If you’re looking to make PR a priority, then hopefully we can help give you that motivation

that you need to get started.


1. Make sure your brand is up to scratch

Aside from a great brand and product, there are a few things that you should have in place

before starting your PR to make sure that you're maximising your opportunities with the

press.


When you send an email pitch to editors, they will often head straight to your website or

Instagram to have a peek at your brand. So, if you’ve neglected your social media for a

while, you might want to relook at the content you’re currently posting. The same goes for

your website. How easy is it to navigate? Are your banners up to date - i.e is it showing

autumn imagery and products when we’re actually in spring?


You obviously won’t have to invest in a full website overhaul or hire someone to look after

your marketing (we know that when running a budget is limited) however, the key is to make

these little changes that will make a big difference.


First impressions count, so make sure that what the press see when they explore your brand

online it’s consistent and reflects your brand nicely.


2. Invest in professionally shot imagery


Image of laptop with product images

Your most important asset when it comes to PR is imagery. You can send a thousand pitch

emails to the press, but if your imagery is not up to scratch, then you’re not going to get very

far. Different types of press spaces require different imagery - however when starting out,

work with what you have got to begin with, create what you need over time, and don’t worry

about the imagery that isn’t relevant to your brand or the coverage you want.


The key imagery for product placement-focused press is product cut-out images, followed by

a small selection of product lifestyle images. Here’s a quick image checklist:


✓ They should be professionally shot on a clear/white background

✓ Be at least 300DPI

✓ Saved as a JPEG or PNG file


If your budget is limited, prioritise getting cut-out shots done of your most press-worthy

products, and then you can create more images over time.


Having the right imagery ready to send when requested by an editor will increase your

chances of being featured.


One top tip is to ​​add your cut-out images to your product listings on your website. Editors

working on online content will often use what they need from brands’ websites as they’re

able to use lower resolution images - and if they can easily ‘pull’ the cutout images from

your website your instantly increasing your chances of getting press coverage.


3. Know your magazines & be aware of the different lead times


Women's magazine on desk with lady and laptop

Photo credit: headcakephoto


When pitching your brand to the press, it's essential that you regularly read the magazines

you're keen to be featured in. Showing that you've done your research and knowing what the

magazine stands for will work in your favour. Familiarise yourselves with the relevant

publications for your business and product range. Who is their readership? Do the products

they feature sit within a specific price range? What businesses and angles do they tend to

focus on?


Also, make yourself aware of the publication lead times. For example, a monthly printed

publication, such as Red, typically works 3-5 months in advance and a weekly printed

magazine, such as Grazia, works 1-3 months ahead. Online publications work on a much

shorter lead time - from 1 day to 4 weeks ahead. Knowing the different publication lead times

will allow you to plan your email pitches accordingly.


4. Establish your most press-worthy products


Ipad with product line sheet shown in a home setting

If you have a slightly bigger product range, think about what products that will be the most

relevant, and essentially most ‘press-worthy’ for the features you’re pitching to and focus on

these in your pitch emails.


If you have a bigger product range you can showcase the most press-worthy products on a

1-page PDF line sheet and attach the line sheet to the relevant pitch emails. Update the line

sheet as your collection grows and evolves.


5. Nail your pitch email


Rosie - lady working on laptop in home office

Photo credit: headcakephoto


From your angle to your subject line, nailing your pitch will ensure you maximise your

chances of standing out in the editor's inboxes. Here are a few quick tips to help you out:


✓ A descriptive and snappy subject line can make all the difference

✓ Use keywords in your email so that when an editor searches for relevant products your

email will appear

✓ Keep the copy concise, mentioning your brand name and the products you’re suggesting

✓ Always include the price of the products you’re pitching, along with a link to your website

and direct links to the products you’re pitching

✓ Include the low res images of the products you’re suggesting at the bottom of your email

along with the direct website links


6. Send that all-important follow-up


Editors get swamped, and emails get lost. So don't forget to send a follow-up email 1-2

weeks after your initial email. It can really help increase the chances of your email being

seen in an editor’s inbox.


7. Keep track of your coverage


Sometimes an editor will reply to your pitch email, but a lot of the time they won't. Especially

when it comes to online press as their content has a very quick turnaround. If they can find

the images and details they need from your website, they will pull it directly from there and

feature you without knowing. This is why it's key to track your coverage.


8. Stay on the editors’ radar

PR is built on relationships, so if you've been featured, don't forget to send a nice thank-you

email to the editor. Whether you've been featured or not, make sure to get back in touch with

the editor with other relevant or new products from time to time. PR takes time and staying

on the radar of the press is key.


Make sure to follow the editors and publications on social media as well and engage where

relevant.


PR Dispatch supports product-based businesses to pitch to the press and build awareness

through press coverage from £54/mo in just 90 mins a week. Their online PR learning & advice,

step-by-step support by a team of PR experts, email pitch templates and regularly updated press

databases mean you have access to everything you need to get your business noticed by the

press.