I live in a very rural farm community.  When we have thing we don’t need anymore, we put them at the end of our driveways along with a sign that says: “Free”.  Often within hours, the things we no longer need have found new homes.

Last week I put a whole bunch of things at the end of my driveway, along with the requisite “Free” sign.  Sure enough – within hours almost all of it was gone…except for two lounge chairs.  No one seemed to want them.

Hmmmm – they’re nice, padded chairs in good shape.  Perfect for around the yard or the pool.  Why wouldn’t anyone want them?

Then I shifted into my marketers brain and I immediately saw the problem.  I had the two chairs folded up on the ground.  They were clearly visible.  It was easy to see they were padded lounge chairs.  But people passing by couldn’t see the beauty of them.

So, I opened them up, put them next to the “Free” sign and went back in the house.  When I drove down the driveway a short time later, the chairs were gone.

It’s all in the marketing.

Same holds true for your press releases and publicity efforts.

You can just let reporters know you are a landscaper.  Or a real estate agent.  Or a dentist.  But you probably won’t get many interview requests.

You have to let them know about the beauty of your information.  You have to show them exactly what you know and what you can tell them and their audiences.

Who do you think will get more interviews:

1) the landscaper who says: “I’ve been a landscaper for over 22 years.  I can answer any of your listeners questions about landscaping.”


2) the landscaper who says: “We’re just days away from Japanese beetle season.  I can tell your listeners a way to prevent  Japanese beetle damage that’s worked 100% of the time.  I can also answer any other landscaping or gardening questions they may have.”

Landscaper #1 made the reporters have to think up an angle or a story idea.  Not good.  the more work you make a reporter do, the less likely you are to get interviews.

Landscaper #2 gave the reporter a story idea that was ready to go.  It was timely.  It pertained to everyone in the area with a garden.  No work for the reporter to do aside from the interview.

Landscaper #2 wins hands down.

Just this morning Mary reminded me that there’s still one thing left at the end of the driveway.  It’s a beautiful desktop fountain.  No one has taken it because it’s still in the box.  I’m going down there right now and set it up so people can see how nice it is.  Bet it’s gone before lunch!

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  1. Yves Marie Danie Baptiste Says:

    I love it, Paul!

    You can also tell reporters of a problem that you solved in your business. Or maybe strange & unusual ways your customers are using your products.

    -Tie in your press release with national story. Be the local angle. For example, high gas price stories are everywhere. How about letting a reporter know specific ways that the high price of gasoline has affected your business?

    -Tie in a hot summer box office movie with your press release. A fitness center can piggyback on the movie: The Incredible Hulk.
    How about the movie: “Get Smart?” Perhaps, a tips sheet/how to article entitled something like: “How To Get Smart With Your Finances During A Recession”….a tax accountant can do this.
    Okay, what if you were an author who wrote a book on dating….you can work this too, honey!

    Here it goes: “5 Odd Ball Secrets Of Letting Go Of That Zero & Saying HELLO To That Hero In 3 days or less – guaranteed Or I will eat a bug!”

    Well, you get the idea. Going to sleep, now.

    Somebody fed me after 6pm. Yikes!! 🙂

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