2018 kicked off with a flurry of articles around “trends to watch” and “predictions.” Whether you agree with them or not, many of these are going to be the “it” topics for the foreseeable future. As a result, pitches related to these areas are a great way to earn media coverage right out of the gate this year. So, if you haven’t already, scan through to see which themes apply to your business, and how you can make the most strategic play with them.
It’s an exciting thing to be able to start talking about how your business is helping a new industry development move forward. But first, it’s important to make sure your company does, in fact, relate to the topic. Calling out “Big Data,” for example, without being able to contribute something meaningful to the conversation, won’t work. Press will ignore you if you don’t have a new perspective to add.
But there’s more to consider besides “compellingness” before hitching your company’s wagon to a hot trend. Here are six tips for aligning your business with the coming year’s hottest topics:
- Get agreement. Hot trends must be universally agreed upon across the team and SMEs. Forget anything that meets resistance.
- Take inventory. What is it you can actually say about the trend? Learn what parameters you have to work with. Is it a priority for customers? A coming enhancement to your product? The reason for an impending partnership or integration?
- Capture sound bytes. Put your key talking points in writing. What do you want press to say about your take on the Internet of Things or connected cars? You must be different to stand out from others trying to capitalize on the same trends.
- Identify targets. New topics can mean new journalists. Make sure you have all of the right influencers on your list.
- Coordinate. Your effort won’t get noticed if you don’t employ many or most of your outbound communications channels. Cover your topic succinctly and routinely across the blog, social, releases, ebooks, etc.
- Watch for changes. Expect twists and turns regarding key trends without notice. Stay atop the news to be sure you’re adjusting your story accordingly and in real time.
Trend pitching is a great way to earn media coverage, but it takes ongoing investment. You’ll want to measure how your effort is working early on. Is your message pick-up on point? What share of the article did you get versus others mentioned? Finally, double-down on what’s working (for your business or the competition) to grow the value of each mention over time.