Thursday, 29 March 2012

Piggy Back

The "Fuel Crisis" has started again. From the mouth of Francis Maud (whom I've blogged about before) comes a miss guided tip, and the country goes into meltdown.

This is a great opportunity for you. It really is.

Every single Local Radio Station will be talking about the looming crisis, the panic buying and the queues at the pumps; all you need to do is call them and piggy back the story.

Here's how to piggy back.

1) Identify what everyone is talking about.
Last night there was talk of little else, so you should have been thinking of how this story affects your business / charity / organisation. Do you have people on the road? Are you a sole trader who works with their van? What about meals on wheels!

2) Think of a universal line.
If you can say "I bet lots of people are in the same boat" then great. If you can't then think harder. Transport troubles in the world of herpetology isn't shared experience; freelance self employed delivery driver (who happens to cater for herpetologists is) if it means one child will go without their snake then it's terrible.

3) Say what you feel not what you think.
You feel worried that if fuel stocks run out then the old ladies won't get their meals, you are angry at the people who are filling up cars that do tiny mileage a week when you have to fill up every second day, you feel disappointed that this crisis threatens your charities work. Feel don't think.

4) Sound good.
You need to be calm prepared and slick. There's no use calling a phone-in and getting your business a mention when you sound like a school child who's been caught smoking in the bogs. Get the terror out of your head, listen to how the presenter is treating other callers and take your cue from that.

Don't forget that you have to get past the producer first "I want to talk to [insert alliterative local radio name here] about the problems for small businesses / charities / health workers / etc.", they will want you to get to the point, tell them the story and then repeat that on air to the presenter. If you sound normal then you certainly will get on.

5) Don't plug too hard.
A couple of mentions of a company name are fine, but more than that the presenter will pull you up on it and embarrass you. No one wants a public telling off.

6) Don't get drawn into politics.
"So what should the government have done?" and the answer is "I'm not sure about that, all I'm sure of is that my clients won't be happy and I'm not happy about the situation. I've built up "Farnsbarns Industries" over a number of years and this sort of thing could really tarnish our reputation and loose us money; and there are loads of other businesses that are going through the same thing." Lovely. No political argument, well side stepped and moved on. Your company / charity / organisation, unless it is always overtly political shouldn't get into a political debate. When you're on air talking for THEM you can't let personal bias suddenly become your company stance.

7) Be brief enough to get a news clip.
The news clip is the great bit in a bulletin where they lift stuff out of the broadcast and recycle. f you give punchy answers and short sentences it's easier for them to lift what you say and play it all day long. If they don't credit your company name when they do use it, call them and ask them to.

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