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Media Tips and PR Materials
SAMPLES & TEMPLATES
Sample Proclamation (doc)
Blank Release (pdf)
Tips for Attracting Media Attention to Your Library
To reach its fullest potential, your library needs to take every opportunity to promote its image, activities, and services to your community – in your own space and publications, in collaborative projects with other organizations, and in the public media.
The media need news and features. You need to raise public awareness of the benefits of libraries in general and your library in particular. These mutual benefits are a sound basis for a wonderful collaborative relationship.
A personal visit from you (and perhaps a member of your board or Friends group) with the management and news and feature directors of your local media outlets can help set your PR agenda for the year.
- Tell them what you would like to get from them, and ask what they need from you to make that happen.
- Go to your visit prepared with a handout. It might be a fact sheet about the library; a contact information sheet for different parts of the library; a calendar of events; a list of activities, people, services that you can recommend as good news, features, or pictures for that media outlet – or all of the above. Be sure you have a contact name and number on every piece. If there are several pieces, put them in a folder labeled on the outside with your library’s name and contact information.
- Ask your media contacts how they would prefer receiving information – hard copy or email – if you can offer that choice.
- Keep your contacts current with regular communication with the various media outlets in your market. Occasional notes of thanks for their coverage or congratulations for their accomplishments can help keep your library in the eyes and minds of the local media.
- Remember that television stories must have visual elements. Newspapers like pictures, too.
- Follow the basics in submitting news releases:
- State clearly and concisely who, what, when, where, why, how – and perhaps why not.
- Double-space your copy, using only one side of the paper.
- In your release, include the person to call for more information and how to reach that person, your library’s address and other contact information, and the date.
- Put a title on your story.
- Submit your story with ample lead-time.
- A good opening sentence hooks readers – the media and those to whom they deliver information. A good twist on a regular function or announcement improves your chances for coverage.
Cooperate with other organizations and get their help in promoting your library to the media. Be positive, courteous and diplomatic when promoting your library. Be appreciative of time and space given by the media. Keywords for a successful promotion campaign include the following: common sense; Friendliness; Truthfulness; Helpfulness; Enthusiasm; and of course, Thank You for your help.
Created on Apr 11, 2010 | Last updated January 10, 2013