August – the slow news month. Many governments all over the world take the entire month of August off, in the US they start a little earlier in mid-July in fact, but no government returns until September. Most families also take the school holiday time to go abroad themselves, which all adds up to not much happening, not much for the journalists to fill their columns with. August is the month where silly and frivolous news articles appear, cats stuck in trees make it to print and Z-listers make it to the front cover. So what does all of this add up to? And how can the jewellery industry take advantage of it and increase band awareness and boost sales?
How to get free advertising – what magazines and newspapers don’t want you to know.
It’s difficult at the best of times to get positive news about your store or latest jewellery launch in the local newspapers or magazines. This is because editorial space – although free – is usually set aside for advertisers or those businesses who look like they may advertise in the future. So getting your new collection launch to be covered is quite hard work, but not impossible – especially in August. This is where you and your jewellery store can grab last minute empty space for free, or capitalize on very cheap advertising rates. The trick? You have to remain cool, don’t back down as cheap or free deals will happen on deadline day when Editors are in a frenzy to fill space.
All great stuff, so what’s the next step? Best start is by getting a list together of all your local newspapers and magazines – and if your business is in a city, all the better as any city will have tonnes of publications, but even small market towns will have quite a few especially when you include local newspapers – grab the email address of either the Editor or Features Editor of each one. Some publications are monthly and some are weekly – each will have differing deadline dates. If you have an editorial ready for your store then email them – ask if you can be included during the August issue, and ask when deadline is. When you email them give them everything they need in one email – high res background-less images and logos in at least 300dpi and your company details. Also include a press release on your store or latest promotion, this needs to be around 400 words, and written in the third person. All of this in a single email will make it very easy in one copy and paste to send your email to the magazines or paper’s designers. If they have not agreed to give you space before deadline then email them again, the day before deadline day – don’t be worried about being pushy, pushy emails to editors are par for the course of their daily job.
Are you able to create your own advert? Most publications will be compatible with Indesign – with the programme it’s very easy to create an advert. All you need to do is visit the publication’s website and that will provide you with the advertising sizes for a full and a half page, remember to save it as a high res PDF. The advert should then also be included with all the other images and text when you send it to the editor or features editor. In the subject bar put – free editorial and advert. With this in the subject bar their interest will be piqued – as nobody likes a freebee more than a journalist!