Making Creative PR Efforts Work If Advertising Commitment Is Expected

In spite of increased health news opportunities, some PR professionals are slamming into editorial coverage barriers when they can't produce "value added" marketing incentives for some news outlets. This situation tends to be most prevalent among small community newspapers and trade association journals, according to many PR professionals. In Part 1 of our coverage on physician relations, HPRMN highlighted exciting media training workshops targeting doctors and how to creatively pitch the media to land high-profile coverage. In Part 2, we take a look at some integrated communications solutions to overcome editorial roadblocks when there is the perception of an up-front advertising commitment. The overall PR consensus comes down to this: Most news outlets draw clear and distinct lines between editorial and advertising, but when confronted with a news outlet that either blatantly or subtly demands an advertising commitment for editorial coverage proceed by: Deciding how important that news outlet is to your overall communications plan and carefully negotiating your PR/advertising mix; orRefusing to play the game by ceasing to pitch the medium and looking to other opportunities to raise awareness for your client in the market through expanded media relations efforts and more aggressive integrated communications opportunities, including special events, direct mail and Web promotions.

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