If you have truly newsworthy information, often offering one media outlet an exclusive to break the news is the strategic way to go. Before offering an exclusive, align with your fellow teammates and make sure you remember the following:
- Make sure it’s actually newsworthy. Offering a media outlet news that isn’t could deteriorate the relationship.
- Decide between an exclusive vs. an embargo. Sometimes one makes more sense than the other depending on the news.
- Find the best outlet. Out way the pros and cons and make sure you’re targeting the most appropriate outlet. Offer an exclusive to a reporter that requires one.
- Have a plan. If the first outlet passes, what will you do next?
- Keep the trust. Make sure you’re actually only giving that outlet the exclusive. If the same news breaks on another outlet, you’ll lose trust from the reporter.
- Make sure your client is on-board. You’ll want to have your release scheduled after the media outlet posts. Plus you want to make sure your client is in the loop just in case another outlet approaches them – unlikely, but possible.
- Be careful. Sometimes an exclusive can kill your story. Make sure you confirm everything with the reporter ahead of time. When it will post, what will be included, etc. Do so via email so it’s all in writing and you’re on the same page.
- Don’t be discouraged. If your dream outlet passes, try another one. Don’t go overboard, but offer the exclusive to one or two more relevant outlets.
Have you ever offered the media an exclusive?