One of the top questions we get from law firms is how do we get media coverage for our firm? Whether you’re pitching a firm profile or a trend piece, the key is understanding what reporters want. Storylines will always rule. Focus on addressing a trend or issue with broad interest, rather than just getting an attorney or firm mentioned. In the technology-driven era of news, reporters are looking for stories that will get views, and tying your story to a larger trend goes a long way.
Avoid overuse of legal or industry jargon in pitches and interviews. Unless it’s a legal audience, most reporters will want to communicate the story in layman’s terms. So make it easy for them. Don’t discount local outlets, particularly if you’re a smaller firm. Not every pitch or press release is going to warrant coverage by national publications and local news can be just as valuable.
Once you build up recognition, it often leads to nationwide coverage. For local coverage, make sure there is a hyper-local angle. For national, there must be a national impact. Once you’ve secured an interview, be prepped and ready to go. Offer quick sound bites. And of course, be friendly. Reporters are always looking for resources they can trust and come back to for future stories. So, establish goodwill from the first interview. Be responsive and helpful. Know your firm’s facts. And if you don’t have an answer for a reporter during an interview, follow up and provide it later. If a reporter doesn’t express interest in the original pitch, that doesn’t mean they won’t turn to you at a later time.
Lastly, be realistic about where and how often you get in the news. Every firm win or media topic doesn’t necessarily warrant media coverage. And if you’re going up against breaking news, it’s best to wait until that story calms down to get the attention of reporters.
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