5 Tips for Media Outreach

The Nonprofit Partnership hosted its annual “Meet the Media” Breakfast Series event on February 28, 2017, sponsored by the Port of Long Beach. A diverse panel of media professionals and nonprofit directors from the Long Beach Post, KPCC – Southern California Public Radio, and California Streets Initiative – Streetsblog LA, Longbeachize offered their insights on ways nonprofit organizations can better reach out to their local media outlets.

Today, media takes on so many different forms it can be difficult to navigate how a nonprofit can share their stories. Here are the top 5 points from the panel:

  1. Own your story:

“If you don’t own your own narrative and share your story, no one else will. “(Ashley Alvarado, KPCC) Create a brand and voice for your organization on social media and share your story on your own. “Social media is an equalizer. You can get your message out yourself. If you’re not doing that, you’re missing out.” (Dennis Dean, Long Beach Post)

  1. Connect and cultivate media who share your interest:

“Find the smaller media outlets that care about what you are doing and cultivate them.” (Damien Newton, California Streets Initiative). Reach out and cultivate reporters who care about (and write about or speak about) your work. Think about doing the give before the ask. Be a resource to the journalists and build a reciprocal relationship.

  1. Use social media to connect:

Engage with the public and media through social media. Content is currency. Tweet, retweet, share stories and you may be able to foster a relationship with that media outlet.

Journalists love twitter.

  1. Utilize high resolution pictures.

A story that may be overlooked on its own may be picked up because of a great picture. Put a face on a story. A good photo can be game changing.

  1. Connect with the right person in the right way

This was mentioned multiple times during the panel- so take note. Editors aren’t looking for stories. Reporters are. Reach out to journalists who care about what you are doing. Read or listen to their work and find one who is interested in your area of service. Research the media outlet and the individual you are trying to connect with. KNOW your audience, make it personal.

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