5 principles of effective follow-up

Follow-up is an action taken by most PR professionals shortly after the distribution of a press release to the media. Literally translated, it means follow-up, follow-up, observation - so it is nothing more than another step taken by a PR professional in order to gain as many valuable publications as possible.

Only a well-executed 'round-up' offers the opportunity to build positive relationships with journalists. Here are some rules for a properly planned and executed follow-up:

Appropriate media base is absolutely essential. If the database contains contacts for journalists who are not involved in the topic of the press release, the chances of publication are slim. It is therefore worth ensuring that the database only contains contacts to people who are potentially interested in the topic we are proposing.

Prepare for the interview. A good knowledge of the topic we are discussing with the journalist is the basis for a fruitful collaboration. In preparation for the interview, it is a good idea to write down in bullet points the information you would like to cover next.

Call in good time. If the information we send relates to an event that will take place in the near future, follow-up can start the very next day. If the information relates to a product or service, it is best to call 3 - 4 days after the dispatch - so that journalists have time to familiarise themselves with the content of the information, but no later than after a week.

A journalist is also human. When making a phone call, don't recite a lead or a formula from a piece of paper - approach the subject loosely but seriously. Try to pique the caller's interest - mention their previous articles and prove that the call to them is not a coincidence.

Record journalists' responses. With a large media base, it is impossible to memorise the responses of all journalists, so it is useful to note down their comments regarding: confirmation of publication, refusal or lack of contact with the decision-maker. The notes help to effectively monitor ongoing activities, as well as to organise working time.

Follow-up is an effective and reliable tool for PR professionals, and when done well, it offers the possibility of gaining more valuable publications. Applying the above principles will certainly increase the effectiveness of conversations with journalists, who, thanks to interviews conducted in this way, will be more willing to cooperate in publishing the material submitted.


Author of the text: Marta