How to get PR wins during election season

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With two weeks left before Election Day, I’m sure I’m not the only one who can’t wait until we don’t have to see another political ad or throw away another 100 ads in into the recycle bin. At Team HMA virtual meetings, we have often joke about wishing there was a button to let everyone know we have already voted to avoid any more political propaganda.

But as we all know the political talk won’t end with the election and will continue into January with the presidential inauguration and probably for many weeks after.

As PR professionals, we often have to figure out ways to cut through the noise to make sure our clients are still heard. Here are a few tips to keep your clients relevant when they might not have anything to do with politics:

  • Take the time to research the recent content in the specific publication or the stories by a particular reporter that you are pitching a story to. Just as there are reporters covering politics, more than likely there is also a reporter covering a beat relating to your client. Even though we are bombarded with political news these other reporters are still covering that beat and are in need of good content.
  • Be sure to pay attention to what is happening that week or day. Is it the night of a debate? Or maybe it is the first day of early voting in your state. Those would be two examples of dates that you may want to avoid and strategize around when pitching a story.
  • When appropriate, cater to the political narrative. This doesn’t mean directly picking a side, but maybe there is a nonpartisan angle you can address, similar to what many of us continue to do with COVID-19 media coverage.
  • Lastly, offer to write the story. Now more than ever many journalists and reporters are swamped due to COVID-19 causing many furloughs. Your story idea might be great but the reporter or editor may not have the time to dedicate to it, so before you send over that pitch offer to author the story and provide it by their deadline.

And of course, don’t forget to vote.

Autumn Jarrett
Autumn Jarrett
Originally from Illinois, Autumn currently resides in Tempe. In her spare time, you will find her taking weekend trips with her friends, shopping or binge watching her favorite shows. Check out Autumn's complete bio here.

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