Five Steps to Planning a Media Event

Brent Sampson Comments
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What is a media event and how can it help your business? The term “media event” defines many marketing and selling venues, including a book signing at a local bookstore, a seminar at a local hotel or a luncheon at a fancy restaurant. Whether you are an author, speaker, consultant or a business owner, media events can be used to grab attention and put your product or service in front of an audience.

Think of that blockbuster movie, a best-selling novel or the latest tech gadget that has captured everyone’s attention. Chances are, these products or services created stellar reputations through the media, and all had media events to get the publicity rolling.

Media events and public appearances can fall into any number of categories and include any number of venues such as radio and television interviews, podcasts, presentations, chat room interviews, online tours, public forums, catered luncheons, speaking engagements and more.

So, how can a media event help you? With some research, creativity and follow-through, you can use a media event to boost business, sales and even credibility. Here are a few tips:

1. Brainstorm event ideas and locations.

A good event idea matches its venue. You wouldn’t have a catered luncheon at a bookstore, for example.

2. Plan and schedule your event.

Decide upon the topic or theme of your event. Next, you need to invite some attendees, preferably members of the media. After all, one of the main purposes of a media event is to generate follow-up within the media by the people who attended your event. If after three or four attempts with a particular media contact you are still unsuccessful, it’s time move on to another prospect or media outlet.

3. Prepare for your event thoroughly in advance.

Double-check your dates, products and materials. People who attend or listen to your events are participating because the advertisement or announcement struck a chord with them, so be sure to deliver what they came to see or hear.

4. Promote your media event aggressively.

You need a positive, outgoing attitude to deal with the media. When promoting your event, you may have to contact the media several times to get a mention in the paper or on the radio.

Invite your colleagues, friends and family to your event. If it’s within the scope of your marketing budget, advertise in the local paper. Smaller papers may choose to write an article about your event, particularly if they know you are an advertiser. Many papers may even promote your event for free in “Events” or “Calendar” pages. Send out e-mails and invitations to your customers.

5. Thank the people involved once the event is complete.

They will appreciate your thoughtfulness. A simple acknowledgement or heartfelt thank you sent through the mail or via e-mail will make more of an impression than you can imagine. If you make the right kind of impression, it could lead to more media events in your future.

Media events are helpful for businesses, authors, consultants and experts. Just be creative and open-minded! There are opportunities to promote yourself, your company and your product or service everywhere.

Brent Sampson is president and CEO of Outskirts Press, a publishing company that offers full-service on-demand book publishing and marketing services. He is the author of Sell Your Book on Amazon. For more information, call 888.672.6657; visit www.outskirtspress.com.

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