Opening a new pizza shop? Invite a reporter to the shop so the client can teach her how to make a pizza. Tell her she’ll even learn how to twirl the dough around on her fist, then throw it up in the air and catch it.
Opening a hardware store? Invite a reporter to a class on how to install a new toilet, and invite him to write about it for the newspaper’s spring home improvement section.
Sponsoring an awards banquet for your client’s company or nonprofit? Ask a local TV anchor to deliver the keynote address.
Whenever possible, try to get reporters involved in your story so they can experience it, rather just standing on the sidelines writing about it.
At the TransWorld Halloween, Costume & Party Show in Chicago where I spoke a few weeks ago, an audience member who hosts a “haunted maze” each year at Halloween asked how she can get a reporter involved in her story.
“Ask the reporter to tour the maze along with her children,” I said. “Suggest she write about it from the perspective of an adult, and ask her kids to provide their own mini-review of the maze.”
Why? Because reporters who are involved in stories become excited about their stories. And excited reporters seldom write dull stories. Ditto for their kids.
You’ll find lots of other ideas about how to create fun for reporters in the column I wrote for the March/April issue of The Publicity Hound subscription newsletter. The newsletter also includes articles on how a publicist got his client’s boring story on the front page of the Wall Street Journal with just one clever hook, how a jobs expert got his own syndicated column, how a personal productivity expert promotes herself as an expert, three new magazines to add to your media database, why you must beware of public records that include information about you, the 3 targets you must hit with your media message, a website that helps promote mystery novels, a terrific book that will show you how to create a media kit to accompany your new book, where to get free PR advice and how to pitch a national columnist for BusinessWeek Online. It even includes a list of March and April story ideas. All for $9.