Is it just me or does it look like there’s more breaking news than ever? In recent weeks we’ve seen numerous stories with everything including Michael Jackson and Farah Fawcett passing away to Sarah Palin’s surprising resignation. So what are the results if there’s breaking news as you are able to touch upon? Do you merely sit by and hope someone will call you? No way! You take action. So how will you do this? Well, to start, it’s important to find yourself in the conversation. Particularly if it’s on your topic or within your area of expertise. If you can lend insight to a subject that’s being covered on television or hotly debated on your chosen cable talk show, then it may be worth getting yourself out there. Here are a few ideas to hook your story on the latest breaking news topic.
1) Blog onto it: when you yourself have a web log that has any kind of a readership, and even though you don’t: make sure to blog on it. A web log is a great place to share your opinion on the subject and even (when appropriate) offer a solution.
2) Bookmark your blog post. You are able to do this through sites like DIGG, Delicious, Stumbledupon, and Indian Pad. Bookmarking is just a means of adding links to newspaper headlines your post and sharing it with the world. It’s a simple procedure for dealing with these sites, creating an account and listing your blog post. All in all it will take about 10 min per post setting this up. Really worth it as it will help to drive traffic and interest to your message.
3) Syndicate articles: after you’ve done the post, write articles (perhaps with a slightly different take or stance) and syndicate it through sites like goarticles.com or ezinearticles.com. If the topic has legs, it’s likely the media will be referring to it for weeks so having some content out there may be useful to your message and a method to get their attention.
4) Contact your local media: one of the finest methods for getting local media interested in you is to provide them a nearby angle on a national story. So let’s say we’re addressing the deaths of two major pop icons, and you have written a book on historic figures. Would either of both of these people be viewed “historic” by itself? Well, that’s debatable and perhaps a good subject for a segment. When does someone or something become historic and how do locals feel about this? There’s your local angle.
5) Contact national media : When you yourself have a subject that’s drawing national attention and your message is significant or different enough to pitch to a national show then escape there and start pitching. Remember: with so many shows on the air all competing for audience attention they’re all buying new and different angle. The thing they could say isn’t any and if you’re right for the topic and you’ve pitched effectively, you’re likely to obtain a yes.
6) Make sure you’re getting HARO (helpareporterout.com): HARO is just a newsletter that arrives normally as several times a day and it’s filled with media leads. If there’s a hot story there would have been a media person on HARO trying to find anyone to touch upon it.
7) Get Google Alerts: ensure you *always* have your keywords in Google alerts so you may be aware of who’s saying think about your topic. Also, during non-breaking news times this is a good way to get at know media that covers your story and start networking together so that when a breaking story hits, they already know just you.
8) Twitter onto it: While it’s hard sometimes to separate conversations on Twitter, there’s a good system to separate out topics by using a hashtag (#) – it’s as simple as choosing the big story and developing a hashtag because of it, so for Farah Fawcett it may have been #farah. Take up a hashtag which helps to identify your story, or search the hashtags on Twitter to discover what hashtag your topic will be categorized under then start twittering on it. Direct folks to your blog, to other sites covering this, direct them to anything that’ll tie into this topic. The media is on Twitter and they only might find you!
Breaking news doesn’t need to leave you, your story or your book in the dust. Frequently authors tell me they see “experts” on TV and they feel they could do better. Well, now’s your chance. The next time a breaking news topic hits the airwaves, jump on it. You merely never know very well what could happen.