Pitching to the press: A practitioner’s guide

Whether it is profiling a new treatment offering, announcing a clinic launch, showcasing a case study or just developing your own media profile and presence, the media offers great potential to engage with your patients in a credible and engaging way. Getting your clinic or service out into the public eye through effective PR can be a very cost-effective way of marketing yourself and increasing your business prospects.

To maximise your chances of success when pitching to the press, there are certain steps you need to take.

Targeting the media

You need to have a clear idea in your head of which publications you want to target – for example, trade or consumer press? Local or national newspapers? Television or radio? And ensure you draft relevant content tailored to them. There are services online where you can find journalists’ contact details, most of which are paid for. However if you wish to create your own list, you can research publications that have written about similar topics, find the most appropriate journalist to contact, and source their contact details either on Google or their personal Twitter accounts or by calling the publication’s news desk. If you have identified a journalist who writes about topics you think would be suited to your company, rather than just emailing them, it may be worth inviting them for a coffee or for a treatment, so they can get to know your clinic’s offerings better.

Content is king

To increase the chances of your content getting traction with the press, you need to make sure you have new and interesting content. You may for example be launching a new aesthetic clinic, or new products and services – in this circumstance, one way to get media coverage is to target trade titles like Aesthetics journal or Aesthetic Medicine, who can cover the story in their ‘news’ sections, which specifically target the aesthetics speciality.

If you have a particularly interesting case study, which will appeal to a broader audience, national newspapers may also be a target. When pitching a case study, especially to national newspapers, it is important for the patient to have a strong, emotive back story that readers can relate to, for example, you may have treated your patient’s severe acne and they now they feel confident again in public. Remember, if you wish to use a case study in the media, ensure you have your patient’s permission to do so. To maximise your chances of success with the national press, who receive thousands of press releases each day, it is also important to identify a ‘hook’ – what makes your story relevant now?

Get a quote

Leave your details, we'll give you a callback to provide a quote

A perfect press release

Now you have your content, you need to put it all together. Journalists receive dozens, often hundreds of press releases a day, so you need to stand out. Keep your information clear and concise – a good way of doing this is by answering the five Ws: WHO, WHAT, WHY, WHEN, WHERE and HOW. You need to also get the structure right, by including:

  • Headline:This is the most important part of the release and must tell the whole story within a short but impactful six-word limit
  • The first line:The first sentence needs to summarise the whole story, but in no more than 25 words.
  • Body:This is where you need to consider the five Ws and highlight the key messages within your story
  • Note to Editor:Include any additional useful information for the journalist such as a short description of the company, campaign, service or product

Social media marketing

Social media is fast becoming a new method to promote your business and distribute industry news. However, it is important that these messages are relevant and impactful in order to stand out amongst the vast number of posts every day. Get this right however and your posts could go ‘viral’ and be shared across large audiences.

There are pros and cons of using this method to reach out to the press, or your clientele in this way, read more in ‘Digital marketing for aesthetic practitioners’.

Putting these steps into practice, and adopting a tailored, structured and compelling approach will maximise your chances of achieving positive news coverage for your clinic and services.

Get a quote

Leave your details, we'll give you a callback to provide a quote