How to find PR stories that get great coverage – using the 8 rules of news

Our seminar at this week’s Two Counties Business Expo – “How to find PR stories that get great coverage” – was so popular that we’ve decided to share the main points with you here.

And Spirus Marketing has a special offer for anyone who wants to use these 8 rules of news to gain more publicity for their business. Read on to find out more.

At the Two Counties business Expo, Spirus Marketing’s PR and Content Consultant, Alex Spencer, delved deep into her years of experience in PR and national journalism for her seminar. She revealed what every journalist knows – the real reasons why some press releases are used by newspapers and magazines while others never get published.

Alex explained that stories are not chosen at random to go into newspapers and magazines. There is a list of rules you can learn that will ensure your story is newsworthy.

This is the secret checklist that goes through a journalist’s mind when they read your press release and decide whether to use it or bin it. The more of these ‘rules’ that apply to your story, the more chance it has of being published.

The 8 rules of news

Timing – news is something new.

Proximity – news is more relevant if it is local to us (this can mean local or national stories or huge world events, depending on the significance of the story).

Significance – news has more relevance if it affects a lot of people.

Prominence – celebrities receive more coverage simply because they are famous.

Human interest – emotional stories that touch the readers are popular.

Unusual stories – rare, funny or extreme events make readers want to know more.

Topical – stories that reflect something everyone is currently talking about have more relevance.

Controversial – stories that get people arguing catch the readers’ interest.

Bonus rule: If you don’t have a strong story, send a great picture. Photos of smiling children with animals and balloons are likely to be published.

A recent example

The sad news of the death of brilliant scientist and national treasure Stephen Hawking received universal front page coverage. This is because the story of his passing touched on every one of these factors.

Now you know the rules you will be able to see why stories are chosen for the front page and – hopefully – be able to plan successful stories of your own.

Special offer

Sit down with Alex to discover the stories in your business. You will receive a one-to-one meeting or phone call, plus a list of your top six potential stories for just £199. Call us on 01638 741830 or email to find out more.