Getting coverage in newspapers and magazines, and on TV and radio, is a great way to promote new products and services. But journalists receive hundreds of press releases every day, so how can you make sure your product cuts through the noise and gets the coverage it deserves?
Well first, it helps if your product is interesting and newsworthy. What are its USPs? Make sure they’re highlighted at the top of your pitches and not bogged down in reams of copy.
But even with that box ticked, to give yourself the best possible odds of getting press coverage, here are five more things to consider when PR-ing a product launch:
We’ll say this ‘til we’re blue in the face - imagery can make or break a campaign, particularly when you’re launching a new product. As the bare minimum, you should have a professional photographer take two sets of images: pack shots on a white or transparent background, and lifestyle images showing the product in use. Shaky shots taken with your phone just won’t cut the mustard. And the more, the merrier, because journalists generally prefer to have a few images of each type to choose from.
Here are some examples of fantastic product and lifestyle shots of our client Spicentice’s new curry kits. They show journalists and consumers how the physical product looks, including packaging, and how it’s used.
If you want your product to be reviewed in the press or included in relevant features, you need to be willing to let journalists see and try it for themselves. This is straight-forward enough for products with a small price point - simply decide how many samples you’re willing to send out and let your PR people do the rest, but if your product is costly, it’s worth having one or two examples that can be seen and reviewed by relevant journalists, and then returned to you if necessary.
As part of our press office service, we can handle any sample requests that come in for your product. Here are a few examples of coverage we’ve achieved from pitching products and sending out samples to journalists:
- The Vegan Kind’s products on Mirror Online, Grazia Daily and Marie Claire
- Spicentice’s curry kits on Indy Best
- Arckit’s children’s toys on The Guardian
Competitions are a fantastic way of showcasing your products to new audiences. Some competitions we’ve arranged for clients get thousands of entrants, which means thousands of sets of eyes on your brand. It’s a good idea to arrange a few competitions to go live in target media around the same time a new product is launched. We can arrange everything, you’ll just need to say how much product you’re willing to offer as a prize, and mail it out to the winner when they’re announced.
The most successful PR campaigns form part of a wider marketing strategy, which will likely include social media activity too. Getting relevant influencers on board to shout about your brand and showcase new products can take campaigns to the next level. We can help identify relevant influencers, liaise with them, and track coverage and results.
Many publications and programmes plan weeks or even months ahead, so if you really want your product launch to start with a bang, it’s best to try and start lining up features and inclusions in advance of the official launch date. You can do that by making it clear in pitches that the product won’t be available until a particular date. Alternatively you can place embargoes on press releases.
Got a product you want to launch to press? Get in touch.