There are a number of creative ways to use the calendar in your editorial and news planning for 2015. In addition to major announcements, such as product releases and conferences, there are a host of other scheduled dates that can be overlaid into your marketing calendar to regularly keep on top of the news cycles. Some of these events, which don’t require a major orchestration across teams, include:
Anniversaries. Is your business approaching an anniversary date in 2015, such as five, 20 or 50 years? Plan to reach out to press for a retrospective story that looks at your company’s milestones and their impact on the industry. Another anniversary worth celebrating is the birth year of your market. What has happened since then? What contributions has your business made and what does the future hold?
Another approach is to look at the anniversaries related to your business, such as the enactment of HIPAA, the Can-Spam Act or NIST’s 140 Publication Series. At those times, media interest will be piqued in learning more about progress, lessons learned or opportunities as they relate to these points in history.
Awareness Dates and Months: From International Programmers’ Day celebrated January 7 to Earth Day on April 22 and National CyberSecurity Awareness Month in October, businesses have a number of ways to join discussions that occur on special days throughout the year. Releasing an “annual list” or report tied to these events is a great way to provide your organization’s insights and information to reporters. It also helps build anticipation the following year when you get ready to issue the next update.
In all of these instances, your typical beat reporters usually won’t be your best contacts. Try a “reverse look up” on writers. In other words, search for stories written in the last year on the same topics and collect those author names.
Be sure to support any editorial outreach with multimedia, such as videos or infographics as well as a series of posts in your social channels. Use pertinent hashtags and focus on providing ways to invite others to join the discussion. This can include taking surveys, calling for photos or holding a contest.
No matter what dates you choose to celebrate in 2015, make an effort to keep focused on those days/events that hold the most meaning for your business. Saying compelling things about a few key dates will hold a lot more value with stakeholders than shallow, rushed or too-frequent commentary.