We all jumped over the rainbow with joy when we thought we landed our clients on a huge national TV show, a TV daytime talk show starring one of Oprah’s favorite sons who grew up to be a doctor. A famous doctor named Oz.
All was well and we were off to see the wizard until a producer had noticed that our lovely couple from Kansas had already been on another network TV show sharing their story and because of that – she nixed us from the show. Our hopes of landing our client on a big network show? MELTING, MELTING!
So what could we have done differently? After much soul searching and self loathing...we learned a few lessons.
1) If your client has been featured by competing major outlet before, be up front about from the start. In our case, the angle was different for each TV show. Turns out, The Wizard of Oz was troubled by the conflicting angle. We couldn't have predicted it, but next time we'll mention the competing coverage before we waste anyone's time. The internet makes it very easy for producers to fact check. You can certainly try to downplay the coverage by their competition, and convey to the producers why this angle works.
2) When trying to land your client on any news outlet, remember to position your client’s story around that outlet. Really drive it home, and make it a key message. Sure, this is a fundamental PR technique, but even us seasoned PR pros need the reminder sometimes.
3) Sometimes, for whatever reason, a hit is just not meant to happen and you have to leave the pity party, get on the phone, and keep on pitching. Like the cowardly lion, you just need courage!
But the story may have a happy ending. We got our courage up and kept on pitching and guess what? A "good witch" big time editor just gave us a call. She works at a national magazine with over 30 million readers and she wants to tell the story of our Kansas couple. It’s not Oz, but this could be an even bigger opportunity than the TV show!
After all, Oz was just a man behind a curtain. And just like Dorothy and her crew learned..we don’t need him after all. We have what it takes to get our clients’ stories told – brains, courage and a whole lot of heart!