Updated: Apr 4, 2022
Every day we see stories that grab national headlines whether it's politics or celebrity gossip some stories are so shocking and conversation-inspiring that they dominate the media news cycle. Just recently, Actor, Will Smith, grabbed his share of international headlines with the slap heard around the world hurdled at Comedian, Chris Rock, during the 2022 Academy Awards live telecast. The next day, the story was dissected like a frog in a high school biology class from slow motion review of the video to experts weighing in on Smith's wife, Jada Pinkett's struggle with alopecia to mental and behavioral experts taking apart Will Smith's body language and bombastic reaction following the encounter between him and Rock. What those experts did so brilliantly was hijack the news. They found a way to use their expertise to weigh-in on a national conversation and get coverage for their personal brand or business.
Hijacking the news is most useful on the local level. For example, if you are a wedding cake baker and you see a national story that wedding cake prices are increasing faster than average--don't be afraid to call your local tv stations and newspaper and tell them that you are an expert in that space with a business. Let them know that you can offer useful practical information in the conversation. Nine times out of ten, a staff reporter is looking for someone like you to help them tell the story. Hijacking the news only requires a few things. First, you should know what is happening in the world. You can do that by signing up for news alerts with the Associated Press, Reuters or CNN. The alerts will come directly to your phone. Next, you can have your bio and headshot or one sheet ready with all the details about your business and the subject matter that you can readily share with a reporter. You may also want to include images of your work to show them that you are legit. Below, is an example of a one sheet.
Finally, you can make your job easier by developing relationships with bookers, assignment desk editors, media planners, producers, editors and PR people---they all can open a door to media opportunities.
I personally have a friend who is an accountant who makes the majority of his income during tax season each year. To help maximize his reach and create a bigger audience, every December, he sends local stations his one sheet and he lists every tax-related issue that he can discuss. He understands the game and has an up on his competitors because he gives the producers story ideas that can help them quickly produce their shows. Hijacking the news can also work on social media when people see stories and then create reaction videos and provide their own commentary---when people start searching for information on a given story of national and international interest your video will pop up!
Honestly, hijacking the news can work in many instances you just have to keep your eyes peeled and your finger on the pulse of what's happening right now!
As always, I'm here to give you tips and tricks on PR and marketing and everything in between. Thanks for reading and following @MissPRandMarketing powered by Henton Jones Media.