Santa is to a child as a reporter is to PR pros. We both want to get our respective target’s attention so we get what’s on our wishlist, which is mostly toys and stories. If you are making some last minute efforts to get on the Jolly Man’s radar, take some advice from these PR tips!
1. Be on his nice list – Like reporters, Santa knows if you’ve been good. Constantly asking favors? Calling on deadline days? Botched a scheduled interview? That will put you on the bad list.
2. Realistic requests – You can ask the world from Santa, and you can ask for front page coverage from an editor. Asking too much is a good way to get nothing.
3. Offer incentive – While you certainly cannot give the media tangible goods to make them like you more, you can offer incentives such as writing articles unrelated to your client (especially for understaffed magazines) or using your resources to get him a much needed interview. Keep Santa going with some milk and cookies and he’ll note how helpful you are.
4. Plan ahead – The media works months in advance, and Santa’s workshop is open year round. Don’t pitch a story last minute and don’t send Santa your wish list on Christmas Eve. Quality results take time.
5. Follow up – If you don’t hear back from a reporter, be sure to follow up appropriately, meaning, not minutes after you send a pitch and no more than three contact attempts. While you probably won’t hear back from Santa (he is an incredibly busy man, after all) you can visit him at the mall to make sure he received your letter.