Karen Schutte, Jim Robertson, Mary Davis (l to r)
Karen Schutte, Jim Robertson, CCIM President, Mary Davis

It was a full house at this month’s CCIM luncheon. The topic “How to Improve Your Media Relations,” was presented by Mary Davis, owner of The Write Attitude, and Karen Schutte publisher of Real Estate Daily News.

Wells Fargo Sr. Vice-Presdent, Paul Kraft, kicked off the meeting speaking about why Wells Fargo is a Sponsor of the CCIM Chapter and their great work in the community.

Davis discussed how to plan for effective media relations and prepare news releases that are relevant and will catch the media’s attention. Citing a recent study, “Disrupting the Press Release,” published by PR Firm Greentarget, Davis shared the findings of focus groups held with 100 journalists on how to use–or lose–the news release effectively.

“It’s so important to understand the environment in which the media are operating today,” she said. “Journalists are being asked to do so much more with less. The news release has to address the Who, What, When, Where and Why. Simple right? But your 5 Ws are probably very different from the news media. It’s not enough to know how to craft the news release, but much more important to know your media market, what they’re looking for, when, how they receive their news–its about building a relationship with that writer.”

Davis advised that in building a media database, be sure to look at bloggers in the industry and include them. “So much of your business is online, even if you’re not. This is where information is being shared and searched,” she said. She also recommended people take the time to research the publications they are interested in and plan news pitches around editorial calendars and other annual opportunities.

In developing story content, Davis said to try to use a new tenant announcement or property listing as an opportunity to showcase your industry knowledge. “Instead of announcing a new tenant, include research why that area of town is a growing industry neighborhood. Become a thought leader or demonstrate your market expertise. This can help frame the story in a way the reporter might not have thought about.”

Davis pointed out that quarterly and annual reports and other industry news published by your firm is a great tool to communicate trends and story ideas. Find a way to put it in an infographic, or use other electronic visuals to showcase the report, highlighting information the reporter can use for stories.

While many attendees said they have written a news release, very few of them are online utilizing any platforms, whether it’s LinkedIn, Twitter or other business tool. Davis said studies show that more than 80% of sales leads are generated through Twitter, and almost three-quarters of journalists surveyed in the Greentarget survey said they use Twitter as part of their daily work.

“You can’t ignore the online tools that are there for you,” Davis added. “There are ways to manage your time on social media so you can be effective.”

For those who have blogs, Davis suggested those companies connect with other blogs and offer to guest post. This will expand readership and rich and attract new followers to your company.

Karen Schutte from Real Estate Daily News also spoke on media relations. She outlined the mission of the publication, which she says she started to add relevancy to the Tucson real estate market by simply occupying more “Google space”.

“We live in the shadow of Phoenix and we have our own story to tell,” she says. “I want to see Tucson and each one in this room be successful.”

Schutte reviewed the different sections of the online publication that feeds her daily newsletter, noting that she receives a number of news releases from real estate and development professionals in the Phoenix area, a wink to the room that more news releases should be coming from Tucson.

Schutte also announced that they are adding a new tab that will feature property comps, scheduled to launch Q4 this year. She thanked those in the room who have supported the publication since started last year, “especially everyone who shares and forwards her posts, everyone who retweets her tweets and everyone who has liked us on Facebook,” she said.

To learn more about how you can increase your media relations activities and promote your business, call or email Mary Davis at mary@write-attitude.com, or visit her website at https://write-attitude.com. You can also find her on LinkedIn at www.linkedin.com/in/writeattitude/.

To learn more about Real Estate Daily News, or to start your free subscription, go to https://realestatedaily-news.com/ and click on Free Trial & Email Blasts to sign up. Karen Schutte can be reached at redailynews@outlook.com, or on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/REDailyNews, also on Twitter at @REDailyNews

For more information on the Southern Arizona CCIM Chapter go to https://chapters.ccim.com/southernarizona or contact Aaron Ried at (520) 300-0114.