Expert expo: Amanda Ruiz on how to drill down and get into the press

To kick off our Expert Expo for 2017 we’ve been speaking to Amanda Ruiz – a superstar PR when it comes to self-promoting for your business. Over to Amanda…
So, you have a fabulous service, brand or product that you and your family and friends love – but just why can’t you get the press to fall in love with your offering?
You may fall into one of these categories:
1.       You just don’t know where to start and you feel overwhelmed at ‘selling yourself’ into the press
2.       You have had a lucky break and managed to get one really cool piece of coverage and you don’t know your next steps to get you more coverage
3.       You can’t seem to find your USP (unique selling point) and news ‘hook’. I call the USP the golden nugget.
The feeling of overwhelm is big and powerful but as a business mentor told me at the very beginning of my entrepreneurial journey, you need to do some promotion on your company each and every day. If you aren’t going to do that, then no one will (unless you pay a PR agent) and who then will be buying your product or service? No one. So the overwhelm and lack of confidence ‘monkeys’ need to be firmly put back in their cages so you can go and do what you do best – enthuse about your business to interested parties.
If you have already managed to secure some press coverage by being spotted at an event or via Twitter or any other potentially non-repeatable means, you must ensure that you maximize on this opportunity as much as possible. Firstly thank the journalist for their piece as you never know when you may need to speak to them again. Next step is to politely ask them for the PDF version of the news story. If you can’t get hold of this then buy the magazine you are featured in and take a good quality picture from above and create a new section in your website called Press. If it is an aspirational press outlet, then add the newspaper/magazine logo to the home page of your website. This will instantly give you kudos and credibility to new or existing customers. You must then also share the picture with all your social media platforms, either by adding the image to the feed or by doing a link directly back to your website’s Press page.
How to find your golden nugget? As you will be so in the ‘thick of it’ running your business you may not be able articulate your USP so why not invite some friends around – preferably entrepreneur types – and hold a mini focus group. They need to ask you these kinds of questions, so print them off and let the inquisition begin:
1.       What is your big ‘why’? In an ideal world if you made all the money you could right now, what is the purpose of running the business? Charity donations? Put back into society? College fees for the kids? Luxury lifestyle? Travel the world? The list goes on…
2.       Why are you so good at what you do?
3.       Why are you better than your competition? What makes you stand out?
4.       Who is your competition? What do they do that you really admire?
5.       What qualifications do you have that you don’t talk about? How can they relate to your business?
6.       What is your mission?
7.       What are your major strengths and opportunities?
8.       Who is your target audience and why?
9.       Have any high profile people ever bought from you or have you worked with high profile people in the past? (I just found out one of my clients used to cook Sir Terry Wogan’s omelette every morning before his breakfast show…she then went on to be a be a professional chef. That is one big shiny golden nugget!)
10.   What do the client testimonials say about you time and time again? There will be a common thread here.
11.   What did you do before you launched your company? The press love a story about adversity or from high flyer lawyer to entrepreneur…
So once you have done this brainstorming, I can guarantee you that some lovely nuggets will have appeared. Keep note of them then using this information have a go at writing what your company does in 1 sentence as if you are describing it to a young child. Simple, to the point and uncomplicated. Don’t forget to drop your golden nugget in this too! This sentence will then work as your ‘elevator pitch’, your opening line when you network and/or call the target journalist.
Good luck and let me know how you get on!
Find out more about Amanda at
All about Expert Expo – we seek out and ask great entrepreneurial marketing experts to share their tips on everything from PR to digital, product development and UX. If you’re an a specialist in marketing, product or innovation and would like to do a guest blog, then do get in touch.