Last month a journalist from our local newspaper called to interview me for an article she was writing about green weddings. Would I be interested in answering a few questions about how couples could plan an environmentally friendly wedding? Do I mind if she quotes me?
Would I mind. Seriously?
A good number of the people reading that article are going to be brides, grooms or their friends and family on the hunt for information. That’s free exposure for my wedding business.
So how did this journalist find me?
The Hidden Power of Blogging
Three years ago we had a couple who planned a green wedding. It was the first time we’d had clients actually discuss the impact of their wedding on the environment with us.
The couple hand picked their venue for their sustainable practices and menu of local, organic food, and did everything possible to reduce their carbon footprint.
I was impressed by their dedication to the environment. And I was inspired.
I wrote an article on planning a green wedding in our local area that got published in Hudson Valley Magazine. It was one of my first paid publications, and I was damn proud.
But that’s not how this journalist found me. She never read my article.
When the article came out, I wrote a series of blog posts filled with tips about planning a green wedding in the Hudson Valley. I mentioned the local venues that specialize in farm to table meals and shared simple ways couples can “go green” and save money at the same time.
When that journalist started searching for local resources about green weddings, she turned to the internet, and found my blog posts.
Journalists do research the same way we do; they use Google. If you write blog posts about the topics they search, you can establish yourself as a local wedding expert and attract free press.
My experience wasn’t an isolated incident. Our friend Meghan Ely from OFD Consulting, mistress of wedding PR, got her business featured on the Today Show and ABC News because of a tweet on Twitter.
Here’s the story: Meghan was throwing a party to celebrate the Royal Wedding. Knowing that journalists would be doing research for articles about crazy fan parties, she used hashtags about the Royal Wedding in her tweets to deliberately make them easy to find by searching journalists.
How to Use Your Blog To Get Free Press
1. Blog about topics of interest to your local press. Notice the stories your local newspaper features that touch on the wedding world.
Local wedding trends, current events, contributions to charity and controversial subjects make for great articles. For example, if same sex weddings are up for vote in your area, that may be a good way to get noticed by the press.
2. Include the keyword phrases journalists are searching for in the title and content of your blog posts. Think about what you would search for if you were looking for information and include those words. Be sure to include the name of your local area to get sourced by the local press.
3. Share your articles and tips on social media using hashtags that can be easily searched. You can find a list of common hashtags for trending topics here.
Your wedding blog can be a source of highly targeted leads and free publicity for your wedding business with a little creative strategy.
What do you think?