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Media Relations. Presented by Dena Reynolds, M.S. Grading System. All students will receive one credit through VCU for their participation in this class. This grade will appear on your official VCU transcript. The student registers but does not attend the class – administratively dropped

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Media Relations

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Media relations

Media Relations

Presented by Dena Reynolds, M.S.

Grading system

Grading System

  • All students will receive one credit through VCU for their participation in this class. This grade will appear on your official VCU transcript.

  • The student registers but does not attend the class – administratively dropped

  • The student attends less than the full two days* – administratively withdrawn

  • The student attends both full days and participates, but does not complete an assignment– can earn a maximum of a C but the instructor can assign C, D, or F based on students participation. The majority of students who participate well and exhibit appropriate classroom behavior with likely receive a C.

  • The student attends both full days and submits an assignment – the student is eligible for an A or B. They can earn a maximum of A but the professor can assign A, B, C, D, or F based on students’ participation and quality of assignment. The majority of students completing the assignment will likely receive an A or B. •The only grades eligible towards the certificate is an A or B.

  • *Please note that students need 10‐15 contact hours with an instructor, it is mandatory that students attend every hour of the program to receive a passing grade.

Media relations for nonprofits

Media Relations for Nonprofits

  • How to land a story in The Richmond-Times Dispatch

  • Pitching to Local weekly newspapers

  • Obtaining a TV Story

  • Working with the Media

  • Identifying Good Story Angles

  • Preparing for Live Interviews

  • Writing Press Releases and Media Advisories

  • Tracking and Measuring Coverage

  • How to Get Started

  • Hear directly from the media!



  • Introductions

    • Does your agency receive media coverage?

    • Does your agency actively promote stories?

    • How do you learn about local news?

  • Schedule

    • Mid-morning break

    • Lunch at Noon

    • Guest speaker at 1pm: Christina Feerick, WRIC TV8 Anchor



  • Why media relations is important

  • Identifying a Good story idea to pitch

  • How do I pitch a story?

  • Being ready for the call from a reporter.

  • Materials to prepare

  • Opportunities in the local media

  • Tracking, Follow-up and Measurement

  • Resources and Guides

  • Event Promotion with Media Calendars

  • Homework

Media relations for nonprofits1

Media Relations for Nonprofits

Why is it IMPORTANT?

Media relations for nonprofits2

Media Relations for Nonprofits

  • FREE Awareness

  • Adds Credibility

  • Creates Name Recognition

  • Invites Potential Donors to Learn More About You

  • Gives Current Donors, Volunteers, Board of Directors and Advisory Committee Members a Sense of Pride

  • Helps Increase Staff Morale

  • Recruits Volunteers

  • Becomes a Source of Research

  • Creates Material for Newsletters, Annual Reports

Before you start

Before you start…

  • Spokesperson

  • Real People

    • Clients

    • Volunteers

    • Donors

    • Event attendees

    • Patients

  • Get organized!

    • A good story angle

    • Fact Sheet about Agency

    • Folks to be interviewed

    • Availability

    • Timeline

    • Expected Outcomes

    • Support from Management

    • Plans for measurement

Media relations

Identifying a GOOD Story Idea to Pitch

Identifying a good idea to pitch

Identifying a Good Idea to Pitch

  • Relevant

  • New

  • Timely

  • Compelling

  • Unique

Examples of pitches

Examples of Pitches

  • Emotional, personal story. Put a face on the story.

  • Positive results from a program

  • New program, new building launched

  • Local response to a National Issue, Awareness Month, Holiday

  • Local tie-in to a National TV Show

  • Upcoming Event, Speaker

  • Anniversary, Achievement

Media relations

“Stories are more than compelling facts. People remember stories more than they remember statistics.” – Soledad O’Brien

Anchor and Special Correspondent for CNN

At PRSA International Conference

October 2011 in Orlando, Florida

Examples of pitches1

Examples of Pitches

  • Emotional, personal story

    • World Pediatric Project: Conjoined Twins Separated

    • The Virginia Home: Man faithfully visits sweetheart at The Virginia Home

    • Greater Richmond ARCenter: Local boy excels in unique cooking program

Examples of pitches2

Examples of Pitches

  • Positive Results from a Program

    • Virginia Supportive Housing: Success of A Place to Start program after three years

    • YMCA: Success of Cancer program with graduation of students

Examples of pitches3

Examples of Pitches

  • New program/initiative/building launched:

    • Children’s Museum of Richmond: New Branch in Chesterfield

    • Art 180: New Mural Unveiled with Dedication and Celebration Ceremony

    • Daily Planet

      • New Grant Funded Program to Tackle Diabetes Among Homelessness

Examples of pitches4

Examples of Pitches

  • Local Response to a National Issue

    • YWCA: Protective Order Law: New law now applies to dating relationships

    • Fan Free Clinic: Health-care reform will help young adults get coverage

    • Prevent Child Abuse Virginia

      Calls increase after Penn State Allegations

    • FeedMore:

      Peanut Butter Prices Increasing

Examples of pitches5

Examples of Pitches

  • Local Response to a Holiday

    • Virginia Supportive Housing: Corporate volunteers paint apartments for volunteers on Veteran’s Day

    • Fan Free Clinic: World Aids Day

Examples of pitches6

Examples of Pitches

  • Anniversary, Achievement

    • Lewis Ginter: 10,000 pounds of vegetables donated to FeedMore

  • Local Tie-In to a National TV Show

    • Medical Storyline

    • Law Show

    • Nightline

Examples of pitches7

Examples of Pitches

  • Upcoming Event, Speaker

    • American Cancer Society: Behind the Scenes Look at Committee Meeting to Plan Cure by Design Fashion Show with Cancer Survivors

    • March of Dimes: Preview two fall events with a focus on one family

Examples of pitches8

Examples of Pitches

  • Anniversary, Achievement

    • Positive Vibe Café: 500th Student Graduates from Training Program

    • ElderHomes: Volunteer Builds 200 Wheelchair Ramps for Those in Need

    • SPARC: Celebrating 30 years of teaching more than 10,000 kids

    • Salvation Army: Director plays euphonium for 36-hour marathon

Pitches for smaller nonprofits

Pitches for Smaller Nonprofits

  • Collaborate with other nonprofits in the same area

  • Develop a joint event

  • Hold your event at a larger nonprofit

  • Identify a good time to mark an achievement

    • We just helped our 500th nonprofit ….

    • We’ve just taught our 2,000th student or had our 500th class or just graduated the 1,000th person…

  • Move/New Building

  • Merger with another nonprofit or national agency

  • Share resources with another nonprofit

  • Personal story on Founder, Volunteer, Donor, Client

Creating news

Creating News

  • Volunteer Appreciation Event

  • Client Appreciation Event

  • Speaker’s Panel

  • Documentary Event

  • Author Event

  • Donor “Thank You” Event

  • Identify Personal Story: Put out requests

Inviting media to your event still need a compelling angle

Inviting Media to Your Event… Still Need a Compelling Angle

  • Revise the event

  • Add a compelling speaker/spokesperson

    • Healthy Kids Day Example

  • Create a unique visual opportunity

    • Salvation Army

  • Change the time

  • Invite media to participate

Personal stories

Personal Stories

  • Identify throughout the Year

  • Interview them. Develop a relationship.

  • Know their availability. Are the comfortable with interviews in their home.

  • Keep a story sheet about them

    • Everybuddy Camp example

  • Find angles to relate to their story

    • Holiday

    • Awareness Month

    • Speaking at Upcoming Event

    • Receiving award at event

Media relations



The perfect pr pitch

The “Perfect PR Pitch”

  • “perfect PR pitch” — a brief, compelling and well-told story that will link your publicity needs with the reporter’s rational self-interest.

  • Your job is to tell that story briefly and compellingly — just as if you were trying to hook a donor during a 30-second elevator ride.

  • Keep your pitch tight, bright, and to the point.

The perfect pitch

The Perfect Pitch

  • When you pitch a story, you’re selling an idea — an idea about you and your nonprofit. You’re selling it to a jaded individual who’s been there and seen that — but you’re also selling it to an individual who NEEDS story ideas and leads.

Phone vs e mail

Phone vs. e-mail

  • Since you’re not likely to know the reporter and know his/her preference, go with the default setting and send the pitch by e-mail (NOT as an attachment — those get deleted un-read unless a reporter has asked for and is expecting an attachment).

Recommended email pitch formats

Recommended Email Pitch Formats

  • Media Advisory: Pasted into Email

  • Paragraphs: Unique 3 to 4 paragraphs about the story idea

Media advisory

Media Advisory

  • One page. Concise

  • Include most important information at top. Inverted pyramid.

  • Think like a reporter.

  • Offer compelling stories. Who can they interview? Why are they important?

    • Example: Big Brothers Big Sisters

  • Provide media contact and cell phone

  • Offer media opportunities (tour, behind the scenes)

Six critical ingredients

Six critical ingredients

  • Who

  • What

  • Where

  • When

  • Why

  • How will they tell the story: Personal Stories

Email pitch in paragraph format

Email Pitch in Paragraph Format

  • Concise.

  • Using plain language to communicate with journalists is not considered bland but effective.

  • Your purpose is not to impress them with big words but to clarify why your message is important, and has news value.

  • Use short sentences that each communicate one idea.

  • Send individual emails.

Email pitch in paragraph format1

Email Pitch in Paragraph Format

  • Keep paragraphs to three or four sentences

  • Never make assumptions about the reporter’s knowledge.

  • Explain each term fully the first time it is used, followed by its abbreviation.

  • Use AP Style Guide as a writing resource.

Writing the headline subject line

Writing the Headline/Subject Line

  • Create headlines with impact.

  • The most effective words in a news release headline are eye-catching words like "announces" and "new."

  • Comparative words like "better" or "more" can also draw attention to your article.

  • The headline is the "hook" that lures editors and reporters into reading more.

  • Headlines must be compelling.

Writing the headline subject line1

Writing the Headline/Subject Line

  • Determine the most significant benefit your most important reader will derive from the news.

  • Try and state those benefits in seven words or less.

  • Use an active verb.

  • Consider a question.

  • Ask yourself if your statement is meaningful to someone not closely involved with your nonprofit/cause.

  • Be detached!

Writing the headline subject line2

Writing the Headline/Subject Line

  • Radical Program Helps End Homelessness in Richmond

  • Event Tomorrow: 58 Homeless Individuals Now Off the Streets

  • Child Cancer Survivors Celebrate Success

  • Tonight: Graduation for Child Cancer Survivors

  • Local Boy Recovers from Cancer in Unique Program

  • Unique Program to Help Prevent Drownings in Richmond

Writing the headline subject line3

Writing the Headline/Subject Line

  • Unique Camp Caters to Kids with Special Needs

  • High Unemployment and Poverty Rate Hurt Richmond Neighborhoods

  • Sat: Nation's Largest Wellness Day

  • YMCA Creates More Jobs for the Richmond Area

A follow up phone call

A Follow-up Phone Call

  • Keep the call brief — unless the reporter chooses to extend it.

  • Ask: “is this a good time?” or “Do you have a minute to hear a quick PR pitch?” or “Would you prefer an e-mail, or do you have a minute to hear a quick PR pitch?”

  • Focus on only 2 to 3 points to sell your story.

Media relations

A Follow-up Phone Call

  • Hi John. This Dena with ____. We have a new program that’s improving lives in Richmond that I wanted to share with you. Do you have a minute?

  • How to pitch the story:

    • Advice from AP

Press release

Press Release

  • As a news article that a newspaper can easily reprint.

  • After an event. You want to release figures and results.

  • To announce that you received a grant or won an award.

  • New CEO. Retiring CEO.

Press release elements

Press Release Elements

  • Logo: Your logo usually goes in the top left-hand corner.

  • Headline: Your headline is the first thing an editor will read. You want to draw the editor in, using your headline as a "hook.”

  • Date: Date your news releases for the day you plan to distribute them. News releases with last week's date on them could be mistakenly be perceived as "old news."

  • Lead: Your lead is the first sentence of your news release. Like the headline, your lead has to be both catchy and informative.

  • Body: Your body paragraphs should answer the questions, What? Why? Who? When? Where? How?

  • Real People: Include compelling quotes from those helped by your agency. Let the quotes show how your agency makes a difference. Include titles from those quoted.

  • Contact information: Always include information on how to reach you.

Pre written story

Pre-written Story:

  • Do they take many submissions from non-staff writers?

  • On average, how long are their articles?

  • In what style are the articles written (for example, short hard-news style, or longer feature-story style)?

  • Is the language formal, or conversational?

  • Has this publication already covered the issue you want to write about? If so, would you be providing new information or points of view?

Pitching tips

Pitching Tips

  • Do Homework. Have they done story before? Relate to the reporter’s beat?

  • Watch/read the news. What local reporters are working?

  • Proofread. Wait two days and read your material again.

  • Practice phone pitches

  • Email only text

  • Call at a convenient time. Be aware of deadlines and live shows.

  • Offer to provide pictures. Newspapers and magazines love photos, and television reporters have to bring in visuals to get a story on the air. Let the media outlet know that photo opportunities are available.

  • Always provide cell phone number.

When do i pitch

When do I pitch?

  • TV: 2-3 days in advance

  • Newspaper: 1-2 weeks before

  • Online: 1 week out

  • Magazines: 6 months before story/event

  • Radio interviews: 1 week in advance

  • TV: Call before 3p.m.

  • Early afternoon is good for a lot of media outlets.

  • Holidays are perfect days for nonprofit pitches!

When reporters evaluate the pitch

When Reporters Evaluate the Pitch…

  • Why now?

  • Why is this news?

  • Who cares?

Spice up your pitch

Spice Up Your Pitch

  • Give the reporter an exclusive. If a media outlet receives an important story first, it might consider it big news because they will have a "scoop" that makes them look good.

  • Make it different or unusual. Stories that are new, novel, or original are news because they have the "gee whiz" factor.

  • Involve a big name. Our culture seems obsessed with the famous, so adding a celebrity to your story can make it interesting to the right media.

  • Be at the extreme. Any kind of superlative that can be used in the story--first, biggest, smallest, oldest--can provide the "gee whiz" element. Play up the stakes.

  • Conflictor controversy is news. Media love stories with protagonists. The battle between the two sides creates drama and emotion, elevating a, perhaps, ho-hum issue to an appealing story.

Media relations



Be ready

Be ready!

  • Have spokespeople and personal story folks on stand-by

  • Know where you will do interviews

  • Be professional. Prepare staff for phone calls.

  • Be available all the time!

  • Don’t waste journalists’ time

  • Do your homework

  • Always try to make the journalist's job easier

When the call comes

When the call comes…

  • Provide phone numbers immediately of the folks they can interview or address of where they can meet you

  • Explain that you will email fact sheet

  • Offer photos. Describe them.

  • Offer logo.

  • Ask what their deadline is.

  • If you have to return call then tell them when to expect your all back.

  • Tell reporter to call you at anytime with ?’s.

The interview

The Interview

  • Pretend you’re talking to a friend or a potential donor.

  • Talk a little louder than normal to slow you down.

  • Have Opinionated Sound Bites Ready

  • Show emotion. Be real.

  • Repetition is a good thing.

  • Be honest.

Live interview tips

Live Interview Tips

  • Always keep in mind that you’re talking to the end audience (public, potential donors, potential volunteers). You’re not just talking to the journalist.

  • Look at journalist. Not at camera. Don’t look to side. If have to look away then look down.

  • Always assume you are on camera. (Don’t scratch nose. Don’t look for camera.)

  • Avoid industry jargon, but don’t worry about repeating yourself.

  • Never go off the record.

  • Don’t give a vague answer if you’re unsure of question. Instead ask “Can you rephrase that?”

Live interview tips1

Live Interview Tips

  • You don’t have a right to see questions in advance.

  • Your message + questions = answer

  • The answers can be dictated by what you want to say.

  • Avoid shifting weight from one leg to another.

  • It’s okay to gesture with your hands while talking, just don’t overdo it.

  • You can select words to give over emphasis.

  • Watch TV interviews beforehand with a critical eye.

  • Turn cell phone off. Vibrating is just as worse. Leave in car.

Sound bites they want to hear

Sound bites they want to hear

  • analogies, emotions, attacks and pop culture references

  • Use personal examples:

    • “I’ve been amazed by how the children will try vegetables here at the YMCA and they tell me they love them. The new program is working.”

    • “The people we serve touch my heart. We have one man here at the Daily Planet who says our new program saved his life.”

    • “Every day I see the community coming together to help each other. It’s rewarding when we set up programs here at Southside Community Partners for teenagers and you see them realize firsthand the importance of volunteering.”

Interview tips

Interview Tips

  • No notes for TV. It will distract you. Okay for radio and newspaper.

  • Take water.

  • Sit forward. Don’t slouch.

  • Keep your hands in your lap.

  • Try to enjoy the experience.

  • Smile. Even on Radio. It will help relax you.

  • Dress to impress as your audience would expect you to. Business professional. Avoid wrinkles and stains. You have one first impression. Think like a job interview.

Top 3 common mistakes

Top 3 common mistakes

  • Talk too much. Don’t stay on message

  • Forgetting to speak in sound bites.

    A sound bite is a very short piece of a speech taken from a longer speech or an interview in which someone with authority or the average "man on the street" says something which is considered by those who edit the speech or interview to be the most important point. It is often abbreviated with SOT.

    Speak in a complete thought that can stand on it’s own:

    Example: What is your favorite color?

    Answer: My favorite color is blue.

  • Don’t listen to the question. Ask for a clarification if you are unsure.

Handling media on site

Handling Media On Site

  • Greet media when they arrive

  • Have spokespeople ready

  • Have fact sheet and story sheet with you

  • Keep to your schedule

  • Keep your cell phone on

  • Take photos

  • Offer ideas for more information boxes

  • Be prepared for video shoot.



  • Promote, promote, promote.

  • Tweet about upcoming story.

  • Post photos on Facebook. Indirectly telling your fans to watch.

    • Patty tells TV8 that she almost died living on the streets in Richmond. Now, she is thankful for a new lease on life for her and her kids. We’re excited the see Patty’s first TV interview at 6pm.

  • Generate Interest.

  • Let the staff, BOD, volunteers, advisory committees know.

Media relations


What is a fact sheet

What is a Fact Sheet?

  • One page of bulleted facts about your organization

  • Reasons why your nonprofit is important to the community

  • Few compelling stats that show the need for your nonprofit

  • Simple definition of your organization.

  • Approved by management

  • Easy to read. Very simple. Broadcast style.

  • Talking points.

  • Consistent Language.

Why do i need a fact sheet

Why do I need a Fact Sheet?

  • Reporter has information in writing

  • Creates consistent language for everyone

  • Preparation for a Live interview

    • Lets host know what to expect in the form of answers

    • Helps host develop questions

    • Clearly states how you can respond

  • Ready at a moment’s notice when a reporter calls

  • Can use for a media kit or online newsroom

Fact sheet general

Fact Sheet: General

  • What You Are

  • Who You Serve

  • Why your work is important

  • Results of your work

  • Your volunteer program

  • How people can volunteer

  • Contact Information for Public

Fact sheet specific to your pitch

Fact Sheet: Specific to Your Pitch

  • Describe the program, event, angle

  • State results

  • How your program makes a difference

  • Stats on program

  • How program compares nationally

  • Agency facts from general sheet

  • Contact information for public

Media kit necessary

Media Kit Necessary?

  • Fact Sheet

  • Media Advisory or Press Release

  • Story Sheet

  • General Brochure

  • Program (if it’s an event)

  • Your business card

Online newsroom

Online Newsroom

  • Press Releases

  • Media Coverage

  • Contact Information

  • Fact Sheet

  • Folks available for interviews

  • Biography of CEO

  • Photos that can be downloaded

  • Logo

Examples of newsrooms

Examples of Newsrooms

  • Fan Free Clinic

  • World Pediatric Project

  • HOME

Being the media contact

Being the Media Contact

  • Dependable. Available 24/7.

  • Respond within 30 minutes

  • Be prepared with spokespersons and personal stories

  • Always be friendly

  • Be very considerate of their deadlines

  • Leave cell phone on office voicemail

  • Have Fact Sheet ready to email

  • Have media policy. Everyone aware of contact.

  • Know the media!

Media relations


Media relationships

Media Relationships

Frequent and consistent contact with local media raises the odds of getting some great exposure.

The local media

The Local Media

  • TV

  • Newspapers

  • Magazines

  • Radio

  • Online only news outlets

Media relations


  • WRIC TV8

  • WTVR News 6

  • WWBT NBC12

  • Fox 43

  • PBS

  • Comcast Newsmakers

  • County TV Channels, Ch. 17

Tv opportunities

TV Opportunities

  • Stories

  • Live Interviews On Set

    • CEO

    • Local Response

    • Personal Story

  • Live Interviews in the Field

    • At upcoming event site

    • Location of place where new program is starting

    • Interesting visual site relating to your cause

Tv lingo

TV Lingo

  • Assignment Desk

  • Package

  • Broll

  • VO/SOT

  • OTS

  • CG/Super

  • Two Shot

  • Feed

  • Nat Sound

  • Evergreen story

  • Kicker

  • Afternoon meeting

Wric tv8


  • News:

  • 9am News with Amy Lacey,

  • “Positively Richmond”, Friday 5:30pm Or, call Juan Conde

  • Noon Show

  • Weekend “Good Morning Richmond”

  • Medical Minute, Mondays 6pm,

Wtvr news 6

WTVR News 6

  • News:

  • Morning Show 5am – 7am

  • “Virginia This Morning”

  • Noon Show

  • 5:30pm News

  • 7:00pm News

  • Weekend Morning Show

Wwbt nbc12 fox 43 cw

WWBT NBC12, Fox 43 & CW

  • News:

  • Noon Show

  • 4pm News

  • Call12

  • “12 On Your Side”, Tuesdays and Thursdays at 6pm,

  • Acts of Kindness, Tuesday at 5pm,

  • Community Blogs,



  • The CW News at 6:30, Channel 47 (Comcast 13)

Wcve community idea stations

WCVE: Community Idea Stations

  • Start the Conversation - 30 minute online community affairs show

  • Virginia Currents – documentary program

    • Submit your story online:

    • Watch videos before submitting:

    • Comfort Zone Camp

    • Art 180

    • Virginia Supportive Housing

Media relations


  • Comcast News Makers

    • 5 Minute segment during CNN Headline News

    • Taped locally at Comcast Office

    • Example: SPCA


  • County Television Stations

    • Henrico County HCTV Channel 17



  • Richmond Times-Dispatch

  • Style Weekly

  • Chesterfield Observer

  • The Henrico-Citizen

  • The Mechanicsville Local

  • The Richmond Voice

  • Richmond Free Press

  • The Midlothian Exchange



  • Richmond Times-Dispatch

  • Daily Circulation: 117,953

  • Sunday Circulation: 166,056

  • Newsroom Directory Online

  • Notable Gifts: Sunday

    • Results of your fundraiser

    • Announcing grants you received

    • Free service or product you received


Notable gifts example

Notable Gifts Example

  • Reeve Foundation helps SPORTABLE

    SPORTABLE (Richmond Adaptive Sports & Recreation) has received $4,810 from the Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation to use for power wheelchair soccer. Metal soccer guards purchased with the grant money will be attached to the front of power chairs to help protect the players and to strike the ball in play.

    The award was one of 77 Quality of Life grants totaling more than $508,000 awarded by the Reeve Foundation to nonprofit organizations nationwide. The focus is on opportunities, access, and quality of daily life for individuals living with paralysis, their families, and caregivers.

    Since the program was developed in 1999 by the late Dana Reeve, more than 1,900 grants have been awarded, totaling nearly $14.8 million.

Notable gifts example1

Notable Gifts Example

  • The Junior Federated Women's Club of Chester'sseventh annual Black Tie & Diamonds Ball fundraiser raised $15,000 for charities. Each year, JFWCC contributes 3,000 volunteer hours hosting the Black Tie & Diamonds Ball, which includes a silent auction and casino night raising money to benefit charities in the Chester community.

Notable gifts example2

Notable Gifts Example

  • Comfort Zone Camp wins SUV from Toyota program

    Comfort Zone Camp, a nonprofit organization in Richmond that offers free weekend bereavement camps to children who have experienced the death of a loved one, is a winner in Toyota's 100 Cars for Good program.

    Through the program, Toyota is awarding 100 cars to 100 U.S. nonprofits in 100 days.

    Comfort Zone Camp will receive a new Toyota Highlander SUV, which will be used to transport children to and from camp.

Notable gifts example3

Notable Gifts Example

  • Corporate partners donate to Special Olympics

    Special Olympics Virginia recently received contributions from several corporate partners.

    SunTrustand Enterprise Holdings each contributed $25,000 to the Law Enforcement Torch Run initiative for Special OlympicsVirginia.

    Sheetzand Wawa sponsored in-store fundraising campaigns. Sheetz collected more than $29,000; Wawa collected more than $72,000 in donations.

    American Family Fitness donated $35,000 to help send nine athletes to the Special Olympics World Summer Games in Athens, Greece.

Health notes

Health Notes

  • Monday, back of Metro Section

  •, 10 days in advance

  • Upcoming event, workshop, speaker

  • Board Meeting

  • Walk

  • Support Group

  • Open House

Health notes example

Health Notes Example

Autism Society, Central Virginia events: Board meeting, 7 p.m. Tuesday. Parents of Children (Preschool/School Age) with Asperger's/High Functioning Autism Interest Group, 10 a.m. Wednesday. An Evening with David Hamrick and Lindsey Nebeker, who both have high-functioning autism, 7 p.m. Friday. Meetings will take place at River Road United Methodist Church, 8800 River Road. Details: (804) 257-0192 or

Health notes example1

Health Notes Example

  • National Alliance on Mental Illness-Central Virginia (NAMI-CVA), 7 p.m. Thursday, Weinstein JCC, 5403 Monument Ave. Dr. John Lindstrom of Richmond Behavioral Health Authority will speak on "Richmond Crisis Intervention Training Initiative." Free. Details: (804) 285-1749.

Health notes example2

Health Notes Example

  • Other

    • Open house, 10:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Tuesday, Circle Center Adult Day Services, 4900 W. Marshall St. Details: (804) 355-5717.

  • Support Groups

    • Lupus Foundation of America DC/MD/VA Chapter, 10 a.m. second Saturday of each month, Bon Secours St. Francis Medical Center, Assisi Room, 13710 St. Francis Blvd. Free. Details: (888) 349-1167 or

Health notes example3

Health Notes Example

  • Kidney Health Screening, 10 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. June 25, Our Lady of Lourdes Church, 8200 Woodman Road. The screening is part of the National Kidney Foundation's Kidney Early Evaluation Program (KEEP) designed to identify and educate people at risk for developing kidney disease – those with diabetes and/or high blood pressure or a family history of kidney disease. Registration/details: (888) 543-6398 or

Health notes example4

Health Notes Example

  • Midwives For Haiti and Birth Matters, 7 p.m. today, Firehouse Theater, 1609 W. Broad St., presents "Midwives For Haiti: Birth of a Dream," a documentary by Nathan McCann. The documentary will be followed by a panel discussion. Suggested donation is $10. Details:

Metro business

Metro Business

  • New hires, promotions in “People & Places”


    Jim Craig has been promoted to chief operations officer at ClearPoint Credit Counseling Solutions Inc.

    Allie Vered has been promoted to associate vice president at ClearPoint Credit Counseling Solutions Inc.

    Richard Schultz is a chief development officer at United Way of Greater Richmond and Petersburg. He previously worked at Feed More Inc. and Meals on Wheels Serving Central Virginia. He has 20 years of nonprofit experience. He will oversee existing fundraising work, and help develop and grow other streams of revenue.

Metro business1

Metro Business


    Bob Sledd has been given the Community Revitalizer Award from the Better Housing Coalition. He is senior economic adviser to Gov. Bob McDonnell.

    Cullen Rivers has been given the Changer of Lives Award from the Better Housing Coalition. He is with CrossOver Ministry.

    Jeanine Harper has been given the Creative Collaborator Award from the Better Housing Coalition. She is with Greater Richmond SCAN.

    Patrick Farley has been given the Henry David Thoreau Environmental Conservator Award from the Better Housing Coalition. He is with Watershed Architects.

Metro business2

Metro Business

  • Business Calendar

    Community College Workforce Alliance offers Web-based training on "Identify Your Best Job Fit," noon. Cost: $29. Registration: or (804) 523-2292.

    Nonprofit Learning Point hosts the "13th Annual Nonprofit Learning Point Conference," 8 a.m., Capital One, West Creek Town Center, Yellow Rooms C2 and C3, second floor, 15000 Capital One Drive. Speaker: Robert Egger. Cost: $50. Registration:


Metro business3

Metro Business

  • Board of Directors, Board of Trustees in Associations

    Members on the board of trustees for the Science Museum of Virginia are: David Botkins with Dominion Virginia Power, Andrew J. Butler with InfoReliance Corp. and James O'Brien with Tidewater Community College. New foundation board members are: John G. Stallings with SunTrust Banks Inc.; G. Russell Warnick with Health Diagnostic Laboratory Inc.; Charles W. Hundley with Hundley & Baronian; and Scott D. Stovall with CowanGates.

  • Agency relocation and expansion


Metro business stories

Metro Business Stories

  • Decision Maker

  • “60 Seconds with”: Expert Response

  • Company profile

  • Cover Story

    • HOME Leader Fights for Fair Housing

    • YMCA Pushes Ahead with Renovations

  • Angles

    • Agency expansion

    • How economy is helping/hurting cause

    • Partnership with a business that’s helping community

    • Unique stories about ED/CEO

    • Collaborative Effort to save money


Style weekly

Style Weekly

  • Style Weekly's mission is to provide smart, witty and tenacious coverage of Richmond. Our editorial team strives to reveal Richmond's true identity through unflinching journalism, incisive writing, thoughtful criticism, arresting photography and sophisticated presentation.

  • We make sense of the news; pursue those in power; explore the city's arts and culture; open windows on provocative ideas; and help readers know Richmond through its people. We give readers the information to make intelligent decisions.

Style weekly1

Style Weekly

Circulation and Readership:

  • Print Circulation37,100

  • Print Readership79,500 Readership Base142,400 Cume (at least one of last four issues)

  • Visits from Google Analytics 80,300 Monthly

  • Page Views from Google Analytics 254,000 Monthly

Style weekly2

Style Weekly

  • Unique pitch

    • What’s new?

    • Interesting people involved?

    • What’s the conflict?

    • What’s relevant to Style’s readers right now?

  • “Giving” Publication: Quarterly, Focuses on Nonprofits

    • Pitch a story idea

    • Offer to write a story

    • Calendar

    • “First Person” Opinion Piece

    • “Being There”: Photos and short recap of event

Chesterfield observer

Chesterfield Observer

  • Weekly publication on Thursday

  • Full edition online

  • Free pickup at numerous retail locations, public libraries and post offices. Majority delivered to home mailboxes.

  • Circulation: 69,244

  • Pitch a Chesterfield angle:

    • Expanding into Chesterfield

    • Chesterfield client helped

    • Volunteer in Chesterfield Goes Above and Beyond

  • Pitch to editor: Nancy Nusser,

The henrico citizen

The Henrico-Citizen

  • First and third Thursdays of each month

  • Available at more than 110 locations throughout the county for free pick-up

  • Only community paper that covers all of Henrico County

  • Stories online, Facebook

  • Example: Richmond HOPE Foundation

    • Henrico couple started nonprofit

    • Upcoming golf tournament fundraiser

    • Profile of boy who receives services

  • Pitch to Editor Tom Lappas at or to Managing Editor Patty Kruszewskiat

The mechancisville local

The Mechancisville Local

  • Weekly newspaper printed on Wednesdays

  • Full edition online

  • Delivered free to zip codes 23111 and 23116, with a total circulation of more than 27,000.

  • Email pitches to

Midlothian exchange

Midlothian Exchange

  • Weekly newspaper printed on Thursdays

  • Available at Midlothian restaurants, fitness centers, libraries, stores

  • Full edition online

  • Pitch to Elizabeth Farina at

Richmond free press

Richmond Free Press

  • Weekly newspaper printed on Thursdays, circulation more than 35,000

  • Available at newsstands and newspaper boxes located throughout the metropolitan area at selected bus stops, churches, government buildings, the airport, colleges, grocery stores, drug stores

  • Full edition online

  • Need an African-American angle to pitch

    • Agency leader

    • Volunteer

    • New program to serve African-Americans

  • Pitch to

Richmond voice

Richmond Voice

  • Weekly newspaper printed on Wednesdays

  • Circulation more than 33,000

  • Available at public libraries, bus stops, post office locations, convenience stores, churches in city and counties

  • Full edition online

  • Pitch to Editor Algeree Johnson at



  • The Goochland Gazette

  • Powhatan Today

  • Chester Village News

  • Progress-Index

  • Hopewell News and Patriot

  • Colonial Heights

  • Herald-Progress

  • Amelia Bulletin



  • Richmond Magazine

  • Boomer Magazine

  • Virginia Living

  • Richmond Family Magazine

  • Richmond Health Journal

  • Richmond Parents Monthly

  • 50+

Pitching to magazines

Pitching to Magazines

  • Identify a unique story idea for a specific magazine

  • Study the magazine for story angles

  • Be prepared to offer multiple options for interviews

  • Pitch the story idea six months in advance

  • Think about center your pitch around their editorial calendar

  • Pitch your story to the main editor or news editor by email

  • Follow up with a phone call



  • WRIR Brown Bag Special with Cathy Patterson

    • Live 30-minute show on Tuesdays at Noon


  • WCVE 88.9FM

    • Tape interviews and play during “Morning Edition”

      • Children’s Museum

      • project:HOMES

  • WRVA 1140AM

    • Live interviews during morning news


  • Lite 98

    • Live morning interviews




  • Radio One Group:

    • Kiss FM 99.3, iPower 92.1, Praise 104.7

  • Clearchannel Group:

    • Q94, X102.1,106.5 The Beat

  • Main Line Broadcasting:

    • Liberty 98.9, Big Oldies 107.3, 93.1 The Wolf

  • Cox:

    • K95, 96.5 KLR, Hot 100.9, 103.7 The River

  • Live Remotes and Advertising

Online only media outlets

Online Only Media Outlets

  • Richmond Business Sense

    • Nonprofit Reporter:

    • Example: The Hayes Foundation

  • RVA News

  • Richmond Network: Community news


  • GayRVA



    Other: Associated Press (AP)

    • Email story idea to:

Media relations




Tracking record clip

Tracking: Record/Clip

  • Newspaper: RTD Digital Services

  • BurrellesLuce Clipping Service

  • Online: Screen capture

  • Radio: Audacity. Free program.

  • TV: DVR/TIVO and a Recording Device: Elgato Video Capture

  • Copies of TV Stories: Video News

    • Phone: 804-744-3381

    • Email:



  • Monitor air times, publication dates.

  • What quotes did they use?

  • Compare competition.

  • Learn from mistakes and from success

  • Keep the story, info, phone numbers and notes.

  • Send update to staff, BOD.

  • Promote in newsletters, annual reports, social media, communication with volunteers.

Follow up


  • Thank you to reporter.

    • Email

    • Handwritten note

    • Social media thanks and photos

  • Thank you to folks interviewed, including staff. Send them copy of story and photos of the interview.

Measurement of success

Measurement of Success

  • Track your web visits

  • Measure number of phone calls

  • Measure event attendance

  • Monitor volunteer inquiries

  • See if donors increase

  • Watch social media. See if“Likes” increase on Facebook or you gain more followers on Twitter.

Measurement of success1

Measurement of Success

  • Track Impressions

  • A media impression is the interaction between a web site, radio spot, television program, or newspaper or magazine article and a single member of the audience who is exposed to that medium.

  • Newspaper: Circulation x 2.5

  • TV: Nielsen Number of Viewers during that show

  • Radio: Arbitron Number of Listeners at that time

Media relations



Media guides services

Media Guides/Services

  • Dominion Media Services Media Guide

  • Wikipedia Richmond Media

  • Richmond PRSA Media Directory

    Press Release Distribution Companies:

  • PR Newswire

  • Business Wire

  • PRWeb

  • MymediaInfo. Database of journalists.

  • VOCUS: PR Software. Database of journalists.

Additional training

Additional Training

  • Richmond PRSA Meetings

  • Society of Professional Journalists: Local Media Day Event in the Fall

  • Business Wire Richmond Media Panel Breakfast in March

  • Virginia Press Women

  • Federal Reserve Educational Events

  • AMA Meetings

  • VCU School of Mass Communications

Additional training1

Additional Training

  • PRSA National Conference

  • PRNews Media Relations Conference and Workshops

  • PRNews Webinars

  • PR News weekly E-letter

  • BurrellsLuce ENewsletter with PR tips.

  • “ComPRehension” Blog about PR and Social Media

Media relations


Dena s advice

Dena’s Advice

  • Don’t wait for CNN to call

  • Start Small

  • Be Creative

  • Tell a Riveting Story

  • Monitor and Communicate

  • Make Your Website Media Friendly

  • Speak Up

  • Be confident. You're doing a newsperson a favor by offering a story that readers or viewers will want.

Dena s advice1

Dena’s Advice

  • Don't call a reporter when you know he is on deadline. It will annoy him.

  • Don't call to ask whether a reporter received your press release. Better to simply pitch your story and while doing so remind him of the release.

  • Don't tell a reporter he's making a big mistake by not covering your event.

  • Don't treat a journalist like a good buddy. Never call him to say hi and chat.

  • Don't make an unnewsworthy announcement because a board member has urged you to do so. Instead, use the occasion to educate your board member (ever so diplomatically) on the meaning of news and the importance of acting like a professional with the media.

Media relations

Joseph Barbato, author of The Mercifully Brief Real World Guide to Attracting the Attention Your Cause Deserves

“This is not a time to be shy in media relations. If a small nonprofit has solid stories to offer, it should be aggressive in placing them. Nonprofits make the world a better place. Their efforts are even more important in tough times. Now is the time to renew efforts to call attention to their life-enhancing work.”

Getting started

Getting Started

  • Write Talking Points

  • Identify the best personal stories and find a holiday, awareness day or annual event to align the story with

  • Write a story sheet

  • Make a media advisory template

  • Develop a Media Calendar and Mark Your Calendar

  • Watch local media. Follow on Facebook.

  • Start an Inspiration File of stories you like and want to replicate

  • Research whathas been done before: Google agency and search for agency stories on media websites

Getting started1

Getting Started

  • Identify four times throughout the year to work on media coverage

    • Big event

    • Awareness month/week/day

    • Holiday

    • A success or an anniversary of a program

  • Write down what you plan to do and mark your calendar:

    • Secure a live interview

    • Identify and pitch a related compelling story

    • Submit event calendars

Homework bring next week

Homework: Bring Next Week

  • Bring a compelling news story about a nonprofit to share with the class. (It may be from your nonprofit.) Think about how the nonprofit pitched the story and be prepared to discuss it with the class.

    The story can be one of these:

    • Online link to a TV story

    • Newspaper clipping

    • Online story

    • Magazine clipping

    • Radio story

  • Bring questions to ask next week’s guest speaker: Richmond Times-Dispatch Reporter Katherine Calos

Homework due january 5

Homework: Due January 5

  • Media Advisory: Write a compelling one page media advisory on an upcoming event or project that your nonprofit is hoping to pitch to the media. If you don’t have an upcoming event then envision an event you would like to have to help generate media coverage.

  • Talking Points/Fast Facts: Write a one page document of talking points/fast facts about your agency. Format it with your logo and your contact information.

    If you’re not working at a nonprofit then select a previous employer, client or a nonprofit you volunteer with.

Media relations

We hope you enjoyed this class!

  • All trash and recycling is put in the proper bin

  • All class materials are stowed away in the vestibule in the front of the class (this includes name cards and markers).

  • Tables are cleared off and put back in the positions that are outlined on the diagram on the wall

  • Chairs are pushed in

  • After you leave today:

  • Complete the end of class survey that will be emailed to you by NLP.

    • Remember every semester we award a free class to one student who completes a survey.

  • Check your VCU transcript to track your progress in our program. Our website has a FAQ with instructions.

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