Wednesday, October 19, 2005

take five: blogging to reach reporters

Today, don't get caught President Denise Graveline speaks to the Capital Communicators Group about new ways to reach the news media through blogs. While this is a little-used approach, we expect it to take hold in the next year or so, and you could be ahead of the curve. Take these five factors into consideration before you do:
  • Good blogs are like a great rolodex: Reporters seek a fresh and frequent supply of news, tips, background and information, and that's what a good blog contains. Blogs are best for those tidbits of information that don't warrant a release, but can still help reporters cover your topic -- just be ready to post frequently, ideally more than once a day, for your beat reporters.
  • Use blogs for bursts of news: Consider using blogs for short-term but intensive media feeds -- during a convention, a campaign, or a crisis -- then delete or archive the blog when you're done. They're easier to update quickly and fast to read.
  • Put bling in your blogs: We mean golden nuggets of information, not jewelry. Give away information and tips. Tell reporters when an announcement will be delayed, what five sources can corroborate or challenge your view and how to reach them, help them plan for in-depth or difficult coverage with bits of background. Just as with other blogs, giveaways attract attention and fans.
  • Create the ultimate collection of links: If you were covering your topic, what resources would you need? Put links to those sites on your blog for reporters, and include some that all journalists use: Associated Press and other wires, thesauri and other references. Make it easy and useful for them to hang out on your blog.
  • Users, competition or your best plug? They may be users of your blog, but reporters often have their own blogs -- and bloggers are increasingly credentialed as reporters. So get to know your beat reporters' blogs well, and be sure to promote your blog to other bloggers on the topic (find them on using a topical search). If your content is top-notch, you may find them referring other users to your blog...or borrowing liberally, which, after all, is your goal.

We're helping clients from book authors to government agencies think through how to use blogs to reach many audiences, including news media. To find out more, contact us at

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