Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Press Kits - Know Your Audience

There has been a lot of talk over the last year about all of the new technologies available to marketing and media folks. Yes, we seem to be headed towards using more and more technology to communicate, but sometimes going 'back to basics' is the best way to get your message across. It all depends on who your audience is.

For example, when I create a press kits for trade shows now, we use the cute little CDs. They hold all of the information I want the media to have yet they are so compact the writer/editor can put them in his or her pocket and take it home without wondering how to lug it on to the plane. They then have all of the latest product and company information at their fingertips when they get back to their office.

However, this past weekend at the Falmouth Road Race, media folks were given the traditional paper press kit folder. You know - when you open the folder there are pockets on both sides filled with informational sheets. The media folks prefer this kit type at the race and wouldn't have it any other way. Why? Again, it's all about knowing the audience.

The press kit at the road race includes sponsor info as well as press releases and fact sheets. Pretty standard stuff - some of which was already emailed or faxed to the correspondents. Yes, faxed -- Again, knowing your audience...assignment editors prefer faxes. Email them until your fingers fall off to no avail, but fax them and you might just get a call!

A bib number list is also included in the race press kit along with biographies of the elite runners and photos of the runners. This is an invaluable tool for the writers and on-air talent to have as they are riding the press truck in front of the men's lead pack. Each writer has the bib number sheet with notations on it, folded in their own special way, that they take from the truck to the press tent after the race and then back to the office that afternoon.

Sure, you could do the press kit on a CD and just print out the bib number sheet, but I'll pretty much guarantee that the CD would not get looked at. This way, they need to open the press kit to get the bib number list and, inevitably, they will flip through the rest of the paper in there catching some of the tidbits you want them to see.

Yes, there will probably be a new technology in the future that will make the bib number list obsolete, but until that time this 'audience' will continue to get the paper press kit. It's what they want and what they need to do their job the most effectively. Ultimately, it's our job to make their job easier and this accomplishes that goal in this setting.

Just a little tidbit for tonight. Thanks for stopping by.


Fritz said...

I've learned that many people will respond to a phone call much more readily over an email, also. Even speaking for myself, it's entirely possible an email from a stranger will be completely ignored, whilst a phone call will get my attention.

In my office, faxes are immediately roundfiled unless it's expected.

Dave Hodgkinson said...

Those CD's are sweet but if your target audience is those smart, beautiful Apple Powerbook users, forget it - never poke one of those in a slot drive.

So yes, know your audience!

Donna Tocci said...

Fritz - yes, phone calls are the ultimate, if you can get to the person. I agree!

Dave - yes! The editors I work with that have Macs have pointed this fact out to me loud and clear! You are absolutely right. For that reason, I always have a couple of the regular sized CDs with the press kit on it at the shows. Isn't as 'cute' but much, much more effective.

Thanks for stopping by, guys!

Fritz said...

How is the optical disk media for slot drives on Powerbooks different from the slot drives on other computers?

work at home mom said...

This makes sense. "archaic" is "in" when the audience prefers tradition.


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