How to run a successful media event

Female reporter at news conference, writing notes, holding microphone

How to run a successful media event

If you want to improve your connections with journalists and influencers in your industry then running a media event is a top way to get face time with them. However, these are busy professionals with lots of other demands on their time, so it’s important to get it right.

Whether you are launching a new product, have an important announcement or want to introduce your business, the key to running a successful press day is planning.

Here’s how to set up and manage the day so you build useful relationships and get the coverage you want for your business.

Invite the right people to your media event

Researching your invite list is essential. This can take a bit of work, but it’s time well spent if you want to optimise the success of your media event.

Pick journalists and social influencers who share your target audience and have written about your industry before. They are more likely to accept your invitation if they can see a good follow-up to a previous story or if they can use the event to produce content that complements their personal brand.

Send an enticing invite

When you invite your media guests you need to leave them in no doubt about why they should attend. After all, they get hundreds of press releases and dozens of media event invites each week. They can’t cover them all.

Be clear about what they are going to get out of it. Who will they meet? What photo opportunities will there be?

You also need to provide specific information about where the event is happening and when. Will there be parking? Are you going to provide refreshments? What’s the running order for the day?

Make it as easy as possible for them to attend. This might mean organising your press day at the weekend or in the evening depending on who you want to invite and the experience you’re offering.

Communicate your expectations

When you’re working with journalists and social media influencers it’s good practice for both sides to communicate their expectations before a press event.

From your point of view, you’ll be hoping for coverage about your business, products and services.

You can’t interfere with the editorial control of the media and influencers you invite. But it’s a good idea to send them a brief that includes your key messages, product information, and social media accounts and hashtags.

You should also let everyone know if you will be taking photos or recording for your own marketing purposes. Secure their permission before you start snapping and filming.

Look after your guests

When your media event arrives, be a great host.

If a journalist has requested an interview with someone specific, make sure they get it.

If an influencer needs a particular product shot, ensure they have a well-lit area to shoot the content they need.

How helpful you are on the day will impact the coverage you receive and your future relationships with your guests.

Measure the results

It’s always important to measure the results of your PR and marketing activities. And with the amount of work that goes into arranging press days, this is particularly important.

Before the event, decide what a good amount of coverage looks like to you. Use this as a benchmark for success.

Media coverage can be measured by the sentiment and prominence of the story, alongside the number of people in your target audience who read or consume it.

The impact of content produced by social media influencers should be measured differently. Take a look at our guide to measuring the success of influencer relations.

If you would like help to run a successful press day, Amplify PR can help. We have experience in running large events that have secured national and international media coverage, as well as lower key press days targeting a niche audience. Find out more about our PR and marketing services.