Just as crucial as any other element that you will have in your small business promotional arsenal, is the ability to tell your story in print. There are many ways to tell your customers and potential customers your story in print. Here are three excellent ways that cost little or nothing. These are local marketing opportunities for your small business, that also offer excellent resources to expand your market beyond the local and into the regional or possibly national markets (if your business, product or service is appropriate). Feature stories or articles imply “third-party endorsement” rather than a paid placement. Many research organizations are finding consumers to be more and more wary of advertising, instead preferring recommendations. Remember this, however – make sure your small business story you want to tell has genuine news value, or it will be passed over quickly.

Establish a relationship with your local newspaper.

Yeah, yeah, I know, newspapers are having a hard time of it right now, but does anyone really think they are going the way of the dodo? (The dodo was a large flightless bird that has been extinct since the 17th century.) While newspapers unquestionably may change, their will always need to be some sort of local news venue to highlight local news, sports, businesses, etc. Local newspapers still fill that bill better than most other alternatives, and will continue to do so for some time at least. By getting to know your local newspaper’s business editor, you can work hand-in-hand with him/her to find opportunities to publicize and market your business locally and beyond. While newspapers will typically expect some advertising revenue in conjunction with certain types of newspaper placements, editors are always looking for news tie-ins in their particular area of responsibility. If you can give them genuinely newsworthy ways to highlight your business, they will do it. How do you establish that relationship with the right person?

Make a phone call. Don’t e-mail – make a personal phone call – the personal contact will pay off in the long run. Read the paper carefully for a week or so and see what type of business news is featured in the local business section. For example, if you think you have an angle or a tie-in to a recent story on what small businesses are doing during the current economic downturn, pitch your idea directly to the editor. If the editor thinks your suggestion is worthy of considering, he/she will use it. If they don’t, don’t give up – try again! Don’t be a pest, but it is okay to be persistent. In our town, we not only have a local newspaper that focuses 80% of the newspaper’s content on local news, we also have several weeklies that are constantly looking for content, and welcome submissions and story ideas. Look around and you will probably find LOTS of opportunities that you didn’t even know about.

Submit Press Releases And Story Ideas To Genre-Specific Publications.

Most of you have seen the free (or low-cost) publications at check-outs at restaurants, local businesses, etc. Pick up a few and if you spend a few minutes browsing through the publications, you ‘ll see that most of them have editorial content that easily fit some aspect of your business. As an example, I looked though a locally-produced Senior Citizens publication and I immediately thought of several tie-ins that would work very well for several local businesses. Certainly there were ads in the publication, but there were excellent opportunities for editorial “hooks” as well. I also looked though a publication that dealt with vacation properties in close proximity to our town. Again, lots of potential tie-ins for local businesses that could be explored. These publications are often willing to do “advertorials,” advertising that has the appearance of editorial content (costs money – but can be very effective). Another local publication focuses on those who live in one area of the county in which our town is located. It had the most generic opportunities for local business tie-ins, as the articles appealed to many age and social groups.

Think Bigger And Submit Press Releases To A Wider Audience.

If you business is not only local in scope but has the capacity to reach beyond your city limits, explore the possibility of the marketplace beyond. If you business offers a unique product or service – tell others about it! Have a story that you think merits regional or national attention? Go for it! The least expensive way to do it is free (it’s hard to beat free!). Check out the services at PRLog – at https://pengarkredit.wordpress.com/ https://remoteiot.com/ https://unogoal.org/ https://678-hd.com/ www.naiwaennet.com. It’s a simple process – set up an account and submit your press release(s). If you’ve got a noteworthy story to tell, you’ve an excellent chance to see your article in print. If you know absolutely nothing about writing a press release, spend a little time researching the proper way to do it. Submitting your information in the correct format increases the likelihood that it will be used.

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