How To Get The Local Media To Love You

August 23rd, 2010 → 8:52 pm @ // 0 Comments

I’ve had a pretty decent track record of getting local media to pay attention to me. If you’ve read the book you know about the story where I went from a simple idea to getting on the evening news in 8-hours. It’s a great story, get a copy of the book and check it out. I know a little bit about pitching as my second book coming out in Spring 2011 is called The Ultimate Pitch!

I’ve been on local radio shows, in local magazines, in the local newspaper, on TV and more. Today I did Cleveland’s biggest morning show called Good Company on WKYC. Here’s the video from the show.

So how did I get on that show? Here’s the process…

You Gotta Have A Story!

I have a book I want to promote, sure, but you can’t just contact local media and say, “Can we talk about my book?” It won’t work. Here’s what I did. On my book launch day last week I kept track of how low my book reached on the Amazon ranking list. At one point I got to #586 in sales of millions and millions of books on the site. I also got to the #1 category for “hot new releases”. See images below.

So how many local Cleveland boys do you think have done that? It’s a story! Here’s the pitch I wrote to send to the local media a week before my launch as a teaser.

Hi there,

I’m like Drew Carey. Well, I look like him sorta. I’m a regular Cleveland guy, but I’m also Cleveland’s biggest Web geek. My name is Jim Kukral. I’m writing you today because I have a new book coming out next week called “Attention! This Book Will Make You Money”. More at

As part of the Cleveland media, I was hoping you’d give a local-boy the opportunity to tell you and your audience more about the book. Who am I? Here’s my short bio:

For over 15-years, Jim Kukral has helped small businesses and large companies like Fedex, Sherwin Williams, Ernst & Young and Progressive Auto Insurance understand how find success on the Web. He is an award-winning blogger, professional speaker, sought-after speaker and Web business consultant.

I can tell many stories and give tips to your audience about how to:

*Use social media to get a job
*Increase your sales with attention-getting marketing ideas
*Learn how to start your own business online and make money from home

Thank you for your consideration. You can contact me direct at 555-555-5555 or via email here.

P.S. Here’s a private PDF of some excerpts from the book for you to check out now to get a feel for the content.

I sent that to all the contacts at the local level I could find. More on that below. Here’s the follow up pitch I used the day after my launch to those same contacts.

I’m about to hit #1 on Amazon today for my book. Can we book me for your show? By tomorrow I’ll have a #1 Amazon best selling book.

Jim Kukral

Then I followed up with each of them with a phone call. This is what got me booked on the show. The whole thing took me a few hours of my time to do. Now, you’re saying that “big deal Jim, getting on a local show isn’t that hard.” You’re right, it’s not THAT hard. But the rewards from it are great. I have seen thousands and thousands of dollars of consulting work come in from my local speaking and media appearances. I’ve also begun to build my reputation as a good guest. Not to mention, having video as you see above is a great audition for national shows. Remember, they need to see you’re going to be good on camera and have something good to say. They’re taking a big risk bringing you in and then you may suck and the segment is blown. They’re in business to engage viewers/listeners/readers, remember.

So How Did I Find The Contacts To Pitch?

It’s really so easy you’ll kick yourself for not doing it. Just go to the website for each channel/station/publication and find the contact information and email them. Most TV stations have a newsdesk. You can email your pitch to them directly. The show producers are the ones who pick the stories to run. However results may vary with this approach. I’ve found that going direct to the personalities works best.

Figure out which person on the show that you want to target and go to them direct. If your pitch is good, they’ll pass it on to the producer. Most all of them have emails nowadays. Resist the urge to send it to every person or email on the site. That will only make them mad. Pick a person that you think your pitch will resonate with. For me, I chose Andrea Vecchio from the Good Company show.

Now follow up as I said above. Just because you don’t hear back doesn’t mean it’s dead in the water. These are busy people and they get pitched all day long.

Remember! It’s Not About You

My big thing was to help them help their readers find a job. I offered five tips. They love tips. Stuff like that. Stuff that can fill a segment. As I mentioned above, you don’t want to talk about your book or your product or your service. You want to to talk about something that their audience needs/wants. Then they’ll inject your book or whatever into the message.

Now… go do it. It’s not that hard.