People often think that attaining media contacts is difficult but what they often don’t realize is that most of those contacts are right underneath their noses. All it takes is a phone call to a publication’s editorial department, or better yet, a simple copy and paste from a media outlet’s website into a spreadsheet.
Emails and even phone numbers can easily be found on a website’s “Contact” or “About Us” page. Blog usually have email addresses on the home page – as a side note, you may want to scroll through blogrolls to find new websites, and thus, contacts that you may not have known about.
Now that the simplicity of finding the media contact is out of the way, organizing them in a manner that is clear and easily accessible is important. The best way to create an organized media contacts list is to open up a spreadsheet program such as Microsoft Excel. First designate categories like “Publication/Website,” “Contact Person,” “Email,” “Phone,” “Address,” and “Status/Notes.”
Next, as we mentioned at the top, simply copy and paste all the pertinent information into the proper categories. Note, if you cannot find a phone number for a specific contact feel free to call the publication and ask for the particular journalist’s extension number.
Utilize the “Status/Notes” category for any detailed information you may learn about each contact. For example, if the contact prefers to be called at a certain time or whether they prefer to be contacted via email, etc.
Building media contact lists is fairly simply and straight-forward. The duty might become a little tedious, however, once you’ve established a long list of media contacts you’ll be happy you took the time out to do so.