I was interviewed for a “Think Quick” feature in the Innovate Section of the Burlington Free Press. I guess all press is good press, right? Well, it could be better… here are some quick thoughts and lessons learned from that recent PR about Freely Creative, Inc. – The Sticker Company.
• First of all I was reminded not to try and get press on my own. This interview would not have happened without help. It takes time, money and connections, and a good PR firm is always going to be able to better focus those efforts. We’ve been very pleased with PMG in Burlington, VT. They understand PR – we understand stickers.
• If given the questions for an interview in advance, by all means, write out all the answers in advance. Any thing that can be done to direct and control the final written piece should be taken advantage of. Any information you can submit in writing is always going to improve accuracy and better reflect your identity and goals. If that doesn’t look like how the publication usually operates, it never hurts to ask if questions and answers can be done in writing.
• Always remember why you are doing the interview in the first place. In my case it should not have been about me at all, but about our custom sticker business and the new on line sticker community and sticker design contest we started this year and for which we are trying to raise awareness.
• If there is no way to review interview questions and write answers in advance there is still a need to limit verbal responses and not get caught up over-spewing or riffing off topic. Remember, the more notes the writer has to sort through, the greater chance that points can be confused, misquoted, or focus on the wrong core theme.
• Make sure the most important questions have been asked. If they aren’t on a list of questions, ask if they can be added. In the case of the Free Press, Think Quick interview the most important question of all was missing; “What does your business do?”. That was the point of getting PR in the first place and I would think the main question on a readers mind to put the other questions and answers in context.
• If the interview or article is to be published on line make sure there will be links to your website(s) or to further information. What good is press about a web based business with no easy way to go and take a look, make contact or get more information?
In summary, have a list of key points and questions you would like to answer outlined before the interview, answer anything you can in writing, and make sure you communicate how you can be reached or your website found. Determine in advance why you are doing the interview and keep all your answers focused around that theme.
So, I might not have nailed my first sit down with the Free Press or effectively educated the public on the business of stickers and their strength as a promotional tool or works for art and social change. But, in business, we live, we learn and we find the best help we can. No promotional effort is ever going to be perfect but we’ve got to keep trying, testing, learning and moving forward.
For the record, Websticker.com is a company focused on custom stickers and printing of promotional stickers, labels, and decals. Our focus has always been on customer service and getting businesses, non-profits and individuals into the best quality, custom sticker product to meet their needs – with the strongest possible layout/design and at the best price available.
If you need any further info about stickers in general please don’t hesitate to call me.
By Jeff Nicholson