A word of caution: This is real marketing.
The kind of stuff people pay the big bucks for.
And real marketing requires work.
You rarely find real marketing techniques like this being shared on Internet forums or given away for free. A lot of people won’t understand the value because it’s not an easy process, so if you’re prepared to roll up your sleeves and get your head in the game then you’re already doing better than the majority of people.
I’ve taken the exact approach PR firms use to generate massive amounts of interest and exposure for their clients, and simplified it so anybody can do it.
And you’re going to piggyback off that exposure.
There are three things you need:
- Give people a reason for people to visit your website.
- Put yourself where people are already looking.
- Make an irresistible offer.
I’ll go into each step in more detail.
Give people a reason for people to visit your website
Guess what happens if you don’t have a reason for people to visit your website? They won’t.
“Build it and they will come” doesn’t work (sorry).
Regurgitating the same old stuff that everyone else is posting won’t cut it either.
You need something exciting, entertaining and relevant.
I’ll show you how to get all those things in one easy-to-find package.
It’s no secret that interviewing people in your niche can be a great way to network and benefit from cross-promotion.
This approach takes things a step further. But it’s only for the brave.
Your interviewee will need to make one controversial statement.
The best way to be controversial is to polarize your audience.
I’ll leave it up to your imagination how you elicit the controversial statement, but generally I find being honest and upfront with interviewees is the best approach. There might be a fallout or backlash. There will also be a potentially huge amount of free exposure, and the chance to build an audience of evangelical fans.
The controversial statement will be your hook. This is what you will lead with, in your pitch to journalists.
Controversy pays, when it’s authentic. Clickbait headlines take this concept to extremes, minus the authenticity.
The benefits and exposure that can be gained from controversy hasn’t gone unnoticed. We have endless examples to choose from.
YouTube star ‘PewDiePie’ is an expert at surrounding himself in controversy to grow his following.
Kanye West understands how to polarize and tap into people’s emotions like this, and Kate Hopkins has made a career out of controversy.
I’ve personally used authentic controversy – which ended up drawing attention from the international mainstream media.
Even times when my scoops didn’t make it into the mainstream media, local and smaller media organisations, including niche blogs have often run with stories.
Put yourself where people are already looking
Paying for adverts can be a great way to generate leads, but you’re not going to do that here.
Instead, at the very minimum, you’re going to get free exposure from the biggest websites, blogs, social media profiles and pages in your niche.
And you’re going to do that by aiming beyond those authority sites, and going for much larger media organisations.
Even if you don’t land there, your fallback options will provide you with perfectly-targeted traffic.
“Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss, you’ll land among the stars” – I don’t know who said it first, but it’s true especially when it comes to making your mark.
This is where the real work begins.
You’re going to do what marketers do, and promote the heck out this.
You pitch like crazy.
Start with the biggest newspaper, magazine, tabloid, whatever and wherever huge numbers of people are reading.
Phone them, email them, talk to the newsdesk and tell them you have a scoop and you’re about to publish it on your website – offer them the exclusive, if they credit you as the source.
Why do newspapers exist?
To sell advertising. No other reason. Selling advertising space is their primary objective.
The more people who read, the higher the advertising rates will increase.
There’s a saying in the media “if it bleeds, it leads”… this means controversial or fear-based news stories usually take prominence over positive or uplifting stories.
This is what draws people in and gets eyeballs on the page.
Now, don’t be disheartened if the newsdesk is short with you or rude to you, it’s their job to be gatekeepers.
Most newspaper and magazine websites have a page where they list the names and email addresses of their journalists, so look through find the ones who’ve written about issues close to your niche and contact them directly. If they like it, they will then take the story to the editor on your behalf.
A friend of mine in one of my niches used a similar approach for himself (i.e. not promoting someone else), and got a slot on a popular UK daytime TV show called This Morning.
Another friend approached the British press and ended up in The Sun newspaper.
Since 2004, I have personally used this so my websites could gain exposure from the BBC, USA Today, The Guardian, The Observer and The Telegraph newspapers.
And due to the controversial and timely aspect of some of my videos, a British television station invited me to broadcast on their channel.
But even if the media doesn’t take an interest, then prominent websites in your niche most certainly will.
This is also great for SEO – you will have authority backlinks and a natural looking link profile.
Make an irresistible offer
Once you have tens of thousands of visitors, what are you going to do with them all?
You will have a great opportunity to turn these people into leads, and then into customers.
The offer you make has to be related to the interview and the controversial statement. If you’re interviewing a personal trainer to the stars who claims you can get skinny while eating fatty foods, then your offer should have something to do with weight loss.
However, in this instance, instead of sending the traffic to a standard squeeze page, you place your opt-in form at the top and bottom of your interview.
If you’re not into list building (you should be, you crazy person) then maybe putting an affiliate link for the interviewees book, or product, would be a smart move.
How do you find people to interview?
Amazon is a great place to start, but don’t expect responses from best selling authors who are celebrities in their own right.
Sure, it won’t hurt to try and you might get lucky, but realistically you’ll have an improved chance with slightly lesser known entities, but who are still recognisable or prominent in your niche.
Another way to find prominent people in your niche is through Facebook. The Audience Insights tool is an amazing resource containing valuable information and demographics you can use.