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We love planning media strategies for our clients, but often it can seem overwhelming to know what can work well. That’s why we love this article from Forbes about some lessons anyone can implement to help with their media strategy.

Four lessons all brands can incorporate into their media strategy

When it comes to public relations, all brands can learn from some of the best marketers. Below are four lessons brands can incorporate to gain traction with media and better connect with target audiences.

Lesson #1: Tell powerful stories.

Why do we love stories? Well, it comes down to the activity that happens in our brains as we listen to a story. Brain activity is stimulated by storytelling, which can lead to changed beliefs, attitudes and actions. In fact, well-constructed narratives comprised of emotion and empathy make stories impactful and memorable and are more likely to create change.

The foundation of PR is storytelling, and practitioners such as myself take pride in being wordsmiths and creating strategic communication. Any brand can embrace storytelling. Showcasing what makes your company unique, its vision, and its commitment to its people and community can help establish strong brand positioning and trust.

For example, restaurants are usually great about owning this storytelling component. These stories are powerful and can help differentiate a restaurant from its many competitors in the market.

Lesson #2: Timing is everything.

Compared to other industries, restaurants often center marketing and PR efforts around specific days on a calendar. Whether that be the holidays or the launch of specials and new menu items, it’s important to plan in advance to ensure the media receives these announcements in a timely manner.

National observances or celebration days — such as national ice cream day or national cheese pizza day — have become increasingly popular, as they bring restaurants additional opportunities to create new specials and drive additional traffic.

No matter your industry, you can integrate these observance days into your marketing calendar to keep your brand relevant in the news cycle. All it takes is a little bit of planning and some creative thinking.

Lesson #3: Relationships are key.

Cultivating relationships with reporters in your local market, as well as the trade space, is key in securing media coverage and establishing third-party credibility.

As PR practitioners, it is critical to establish clients as reliable, trusted sources for reporters. Not only is it helpful when you share news with these contacts, but they will also be more likely to come to you when needing a source for a story idea. As the PR industry becomes more and more digitized, it is critical to find genuine ways to cultivate relationships.

The growth of the online space and e-commerce has led to another set of key relationships: influencers. Whether it is a visit, online giveaway, blog post or serving as a brand ambassador, influencers’ influence in the media space will continue to grow, and brands need to understand how to best work this type of media.

For media and influencer relationships, it is critical to always keep an eye out for opportunities to take these relationships a step further. It could be inviting them to speak on your company or client’s panel, sending them an invite to an event or writing a simple “thank you” email.

Lesson #4: Become a newsjacking pro.

This last lesson is to always be a student of the news and understand the power of newsjacking. One of the most valuable things you can do for a brand is to be entrenched in your industry’s news cycle. Sign up for the top trade newsletters. Follow the leading reporters on Twitter. And always keep an eye out for media opportunities in the news.

Knowing what’s going on in the industry is imperative to spot trends early on or identify “newsjacking” opportunities to insert your brand into the current news cycle. In order to create a steady drumbeat of media coverage for your company and truly position your brand as a thought leader in your respective industry, you need to always be learning and in tune with the news.

These lessons can help you increase the efficiency and impact of your PR efforts. And they can help set up your brand for long-term success. The media landscape is constantly evolving — regardless of industry. And I’m excited to see how brands will continue to adapt and grow with it in the years to come.

Amy Power is the founder and president of The Power Group, and she also is a contributor to Forbes. A version of this article can be found at Forbes.com. If you’d like to read more like this, read 5 ways to use digital branding to stand out.

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