Episode 099: Show Notes
Today we are here with the lovely Ashley Gartland. Ashley helps passionate creatives and driven entrepreneurs like you, who feel like they’re drowning in to-dos and just want someone to tell them where to focus to make their business work. She teaches them how to stop overcomplicating things and simplify their approach so they can make more money in their business and experience more freedom in their life.
If you haven’t listened to our episode with Rachel Hofstetter, way back in episode 003, do yourself a favor and listen to it BUT listen to this one first. They are interlinked in that they both talk about your approach to press but Ashley breaks down the first steps you need to go through. She gets into all the befores and afters of getting press for your business and she’s helping you get ready to get your business featured.
Before You Even Think About Pitching
According to Ashley, the piece that people miss is that they don't get ready to get featured. People go right to the pitch, they go right to researching what they want to write about and who they should pitch and what the platform should be and they don’t spend the time preparing their business. It’s so important, firstly because you’ve got to get everything ready to be seen by people. You also want to be prepared on the backend because as soon as you get that feature, everyone's eyes are going to be on you. You want your business equipped to receive. It really helps you look more professional and impresses those gatekeepers at the publications and the podcasts and then it also helps you actually leverage that attention, which getting featured is all about in the first place.
The Importance of Polishing Your Pitch
It’s very important to have your business fully prepared before even pitching for a feature. You need to get the online face of your business ready. You need to make sure that what those gatekeepers see is accurate and professional and really enticing and engaging, so it will make them want more. If you’re a product-based business, you have to have those products ready to go in case you get a lot of orders. You need to get yourself looking professional and polished so that you can land those pitches in the first place.
5 Steps to Polishing Your Pitch
Ashley usually takes people through five steps, and they are all really simple and easy to do yourself. Step 1 is getting clear on your elevator pitch. You need to be able to accurately describe what you do and how you can help people. Step 2 is getting your press bio ready and having a call to action. You need to take your elevator pitch and build on that by adding details to it. Step 3 is packaging everything up on a press page with a hidden link. Add a headshot and any logos to it so that it looks very professional. Step 4 is deleting any irrelevant information that is not on brand. Refine your social media and if it’s not relevant or on brand then delete it. Step 5 is having a place to send people. Whether it’s your website or a Facebook page, have a place where people can go to get more information about you and see what you’re up to. Your website needs to define who you are and what you do, so make sure it’s clear and it has contact information included.
Targeting Through Your Website
You want to be targeting both the people you’re pitching to and their target audience. As soon as you start pitching, you have to start thinking like those gatekeepers and editors and podcast hosts and what they want to see and “hear” on your website. The key is to make your Home Page engaging so it grabs their attention and gets them to want to look further and know more. You also need to have really clear navigation on your website and if you have an About Page, make sure it’s really engaging. Those are the two most visited pages, so have your About Page tell a story and draw people in. If you have a blog, make sure it’s on brand, consistent and relevant. If you haven’t posted in months, take it down before you start pitching because it’s not doing you any good. Make sure your social icons are linking to the relevant pages and make sure that everything is up to date.
Leveraging The Opportunity
The moment you get featured you’re going to get all those eyes on you, and you should be doing a blitz of your own. You should be sharing that you’re being featured across all of your platforms. As soon as you start accumulating press on your homepage, you want to have a “featured in” section so people can see. A big piece of getting featured is building your credibility. You want that to work for you forever. Part of leveraging it is using it in your materials going forward. The same content can appear in multiple places. Sometimes it’s just necessary for you to tweak it for the correct audience. Leveraging the opportunity that you were featured in places makes you more intriguing to the gatekeepers. Build on previous features to get more opportunities. Make yourself a list of all the places you have been featured so that you can swap them out. Your features need to be tailored to your audience.
Finding the Balance
It’s a mindset shift. You have to decide that this is a goal that you want to tackle and that it’s important to you and your business. It’s not a guarantee that you’re going to get a feature and it’s going to be a slam dunk. It’s an opportunity, just like everything we do in our businesses. You need to set aside some time every week to do this. These 5 steps to get your pitch polished and get you featured should take you five days, if not less. Most of the steps include things you should be doing anyway, and they’ll benefit other parts of your business too. Have a backup idea of what to do with your content if you don’t get the feature so you don’t end up wasting time.
- What to do before you even think about pitching. [0:02:29.0]
- The importance of preparing and polishing your pitch whether you’re a service or product-based business. [0:03:58.0]
- Five steps to prepare and polish your pitch in order to get featured. [0:04:42.0]
- Targeting through your website and making sure it’s ready to be featured. [0:19:40.0]
- Leveraging the opportunity of press and keeping the momentum going. [0:23:09.0]
- Balancing press with the rest of your business. [0:31:36.0]
- Think like the person you’re pitching.
- Knowing your elevator pitch.
- Practicing your elevator pitch.
- Getting your press page in place.