One of the key concepts we teach in media training is the idea that “press begets press.” We’ve seen it a thousand times. With a smart team executing on a long-term plan, consistent coverage in local and trade outlets builds toward large, national coverage; and large, national coverage leads to more national coverage.
Smaller tier coverage is essential for helping the world — and national reporters in particular — understand your story. It piques or confirms their interest in you. A strong corpus of local and trade coverage will provide someone looking into your company with several explanations of your story and a preliminary understanding of your core messages.
It also requires you to flesh out additional use cases or applications of your idea, which provide us with even more fuel for pitching and coverage. And along the way, your spokespeople get better at conducting effective, message-driven interviews. By the time we secure top-tier opportunities, all of these factors help shape coverage that is more accurate and impactful than if we had been sharpshooting for the top shelf since the beginning.
This early coverage, moreover, is valuable in its own right, aside from serving as a stepping stone. CEOs read and trust their hometown newspapers. Industry leaders monitor and trust trade publications covering their industries.
Some recent client successes can illustrate how this ladder-climbing works. When HawkEye 360 landed one of the biggest and most important news stories they’d ever had — a feature in the New York Times — it didn't come as an overnight surprise.
We used every tool in our toolbox for more than six months to generate coverage. We leveraged the company's proprietary insights — such as those exposing illegal fishing and environmental degradation — to earn a variety of news stories in local news outlets and in space and defense-focused trade outlets.
We also pursued thought leadership opportunities in trade publications for company executives, positioning them within emerging conversations about the commercial space industry, space-based intelligence insights and government acquisition methods. These smaller media wins helped spark a dialogue with the Times' article national security team which ultimately led to impactful coverage.
Once a client has successfully climbed the ladder to top-tier media coverage, every piece of national coverage has the chance to ripple outwards and create several more opportunities. Soon after Pinkston secured a quote for Dale Buckner, the CEO of global security firm Global Guardian, in a POLITICO story about corporations planning to protect and evacuate their Taiwan-based employees during a potential evacuation, we received interview invitations from several cable news networks, syndicated news radio and national newspapers, leading to extensive add-on coverage.
Pinkston knows how to help you begin to climb the media ladder, beginning with building awareness, trust, and strong messaging conducive to winning top-tier coverage. In the end, when we land that big feature, it won't feel like winning the lottery, but instead like putting the finishing touch on a masterpiece painting.