Tracking your correspondence with reporters, via phone or email, is important for two reasons. First of all, promises to follow-up can slip between the cracks of daily business and cost you a change at free publicity. Second, you don't ever want to contact a reporter twice about the same story. You will immediately destroy your credibility.
In my years as a public relations professional, I've developed a good system that financial planners can use to track contacts with the media.
It's simple. Just two logs that you can keep in a paper notepad, or in a spreadsheet program on your computer.
Keep one log to track reporters that you have contacted. It should have these three columns: A column for the names of the reporters you’ve contacted, a column that lists what each reporter is interested in, and then a column describing when/why to follow up next.
Plug these reminders into your calendar – without this tool, you may make the critical mistake of forgetting to follow-up.
Keep a second log to track reporters you’re going to contact. It should have these three columns: A column for the reporters’ names, a column that lists their topic interests, and another column with a target date when you want to contact them.
Ned Steele works with people in professional services who want to build their practice and accelerate their growth. The president of Ned Steele's MediaImpact, he is the author of 102 Publicity Tips To Grow a Business or Practice. To learn more visit http://www.MediaImpact.biz or call 212-243-8383.