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Your Utility’s Chances for Press Coverage May Increase Around the Holidays

image credit: ID 76441705 © Khunaspix |
Andy Gotlieb's picture
Editor of a specialty publication, former public relations practitioner, Freelancer

I hold 34 years of experience in communications, mostly in journalism, with a decade in public relations, too.  The first 17 years were spent in print journalism, where I covered, at various...

  • Member since 2016
  • 1,040 items added with 540,067 views
  • Dec 16, 2022

We may still be around two months before baseball’s Spring Training Begins, but the next two weeks are a great time to pitch – stories about your utilities.

Newsrooms are woefully understaffed these days and vacations make things even worse.

Add in that news tends to slow down this time of year; schools go on hiatus, everyone is seemingly on vacation and/or shopping madly and government and many businesses hit autopilot.

That means those reporters and editors who are still clocking in are scrounging (sometimes frantically) for things to cover, especially things that don’t require a lot of legwork and added effort. After all, radio and TV can’t have dead air, newspapers don’t publish blank pages and news-related websites have to refresh their home pages regularly.

And that’s why now is the perfect time to pitch stories about your utility. One note of caution: Just because the odds are better now that you might get coverage, there are never any guarantees. Public relations pitching was (and remains) akin to cold-call sales. By nature, your success rate is going to be low, but it can’t hurt to try.

You also can improve your odds by pitching stories that will appeal to the media, not to mention its audience.

Every PR practitioner can tell tales of having to pitch (at the request of higher-ups) story ideas that they knew there was no way anyone was going to cover. And now is not the time to try those pitches.

But if you have legitimately important, interesting or informative information to impart, have at it.  Personality profiles, quirky features and plain old news could all possibly work.

Just be sure to make it easy for the reporter. That includes providing all the pertinent details, photographs/video and contact information.

Do whatever it takes to make the story happen and respond immediately to inquiries. I can tell you from firsthand experience that reporters often have multiple story ideas and go with the one where the sources get back to them first.

If you are fortunate to land coverage, take advantage of the multiplier effect by posting links to it on your website and mentioning it in your social media channels.


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Andy Gotlieb's picture
Thank Andy for the Post!
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