What is a free and easy way to get your name to get media coverage? Write an op-ed. Op-eds are opinion pieces that anyone can write and submit. They appear on the page opposite the newspaper’s editorials. Op-eds can provide knowledge, spark discussion, or introduce a fresh point of view.
Get your op-ed printed by following these suggestions:
Research your newspaper. Most newspapers have guidelines for the length of articles they will print. It doesn’t matter how good your piece is, if it is too long, the paper doesn’t have the space to print it.
Choose a focused topic. The topic must be relevant to what is happening in the news, and it must also be appealing to an audience. Editors will print the articles they think the most people will read.
Have a strong opinion. The point of the article is to express your opinion, so don’t be afraid of turning some readers off. There will always be contrarians. Avoid trying to explain all sides.
On the defense. After you make your statement, defend it. Propose a solution to further back your statement.
Use the appropriate language. Newspapers are written at a sixth grade level. Using jargon and acronyms increases you chances of losing readers and not getting your message across. Also avoid clichés. They bore the readers.
Check and double check. Although the piece is based on opinion, the facts you use to defend it must be correct. You will quickly lose credibility if readers recognize incorrect facts. Incorrect spelling and grammar will also make you look less reliable.
Here are some additional details to remember to get media coverage with op-ed pieces:
- Put your name, address, email, and phone number at the top of the page
- Or, you can include a short paragraph at the bottom that includes this information plus information that explains why you are an expert and website address.
- Use a common font like Times New Roman or Arial in size 10 or 12.
- Don’t send op-ed queries; editors want finished pieces.
- If you are mailing it, only put one piece in an envelope. Editors won’t print a bunch of articles from one source.
Are you looking for more ways to get media coverage? Penny Pinching Publicity may be your answer.