Getting Free Publicity for Your Jewelry Business
Free Publicity is a good place to start getting noticed and the
most effective low cost way to promote any business.
What Is Publicity?
Publicity is a non-paid communication in which you really have no direct control over what is said, how it is said and to who. Any mention you get in the public media without paying for it is free publicity, and good publicity receives far better results than paid advertising in terms of sales and positive exposure to thousands of people. For example, a feature story about your business in a magazine article or a television news story.
Since you probably have a limited budget, you'll want to aim for the most exposure for the least money. Paid advertising can always come later.
You will find that the effects of publicity are more dramatic than a paid ad. That's because of "third party endorsement". People perceive that if your product is mentioned in a newspaper or magazine than it must be endorsed by that media.
Michael Scott, author of The Crafts Business Encyclopedia, says that "Publicity has two values. One benefit of course, is to rub your ego the right way. It never hurts to see something nice about yourself in print. The other reward, even more important, is that publicity is a sales tool. It does not sell as directly as advertising can. People know that advertising is bought, but publicity is earned. If a reporter or an editor or a television newscaster—all exercising their independent judgment—say that your craftwork is worth a story, then the viewing and reading
How Do People Get Publicity?
Perhaps you have wondered how other jewelry designers or crafts people get mentioned in the news and feature sections of your local newspaper. You have probably asked yourself: Do they have friends that are reporters? Do they buy lots of advertising? Are their crafts more unique or interesting than mine? Are their businesses more important to the community? What is their secret?
The answer is that they know how to get their names in the paper. Reporters are often too busy to contact businesses to see if they have anything newsworthy to write about, and if you are a new business or very small, no one probably even knows that you exist.
Publicity is more or less sharing news and information on a mass scale. More than 70% of what appears in print has been "planted" by public relations techniques.
Editors are always seeking interesting articles and stories to fill their pages. You can fill this need by submitting your own article or interesting story about you and/or your craft, and reap the free publicity rewards at the same time.
Are My Jewelry Designs Newsworthy?
You may think that what you do is not particularly newsworthy or will make an interesting story. But editor's do! They are always looking for good human interest stories, and your's has a special appeal because you are able to create things most people cannot. The markets are large and eager for originality, quality, and uniqueness, not only for crafts, but for the craftsperson's insight and imagination. Part of that appeal is getting to know the person who makes them.
The most important part of getting the editor's attention and having them accept your press release, is to have your story as interesting and intriguing as possible. You have to find something unique about your work or yourself. Is there something special about the kind of objects you make, or the materials you use? How about the process or tools you use?
At this point you may be thinking "What's so special about me, I'm only a jewelry maker and there are lots of people who make jewelry?" Well, maybe there are lots of jewelry makers around, but how many do you read about, how many take advantage of free publicity and get their stories in the paper?
There must be something different and unique about your work or it wouldn't be selling. Do you use a special, rare or a unique beads in your work? Do you have a special pattern or design you use? If so why? How did you come up with the idea? Is your studio located in a unique building or location? How about you as a jewelry designer, how did you learn your skills? Why did you become a jewelry artist? What makes each piece you produce special?
I'm sure there are many interesting aspects of you and your work that could be shared with the public and help you get noticed. The first step towards getting free publicity, is to get over the modesty, shyness and concern that nobody else is really interested in what you do or make. People do love to read human interest stories—it helps to relieve the dreariness of wars, crime, politics, economic troubles, and just plain bad news.
Another great way to getting noticed is to have you and/or your jewelry designs published by a couple of major beading magazines. See the following article: Magazine Submissions for Beading Projects and Jewelry Designs.
Your main purpose for developing a publicity campaign is to gain name recognition. The more people read about you and your products the more they will recognize your name the next time they see your work displayed at a craft show or in a gift shop. So it's important to not just sell your products, but sell your name and your image. Once people know and accept you, they'll also accept your products and/or services.
For more information on name recognition read the following article: Create a Name Recognition for Yourself
How To Get Free Publicity over the Internet
There are many ways to get free publicity over the internet. The best way is to write articles about your jewelry, either as a free project or technique tips or some interesting and useful information about beads, beading, jewelry, jewelry business, etc. Your article has to be interesting and something the reader can benefit from reading it. Posting articles in jewelry-related Forums or newsletters (ezines) is also an easy way to get additional exposure.
One of the most important parts of your article is the headline or title. It must be attention-grabbing enough to get the click, to get the reader to want to learn more about what you have to say. Before you submit an article to an article site check out their editorial guidelines. These editorial guidelines are designed to help you understand what they accept and don't accept for inclusion in their article database. Here is an example of an Editorial Guideline For Submitting To EzineArticles.com
For further information and great advice on writing articles visit Christopher Knight. an expert author at ezinearticles.com
Another way to gain some exposure or at least links to your site is to register with "directories". Some directories you will have to pay a listing fee, but many are free.
Here are a few "free" directories you could consider to have a listing with:
The Craft Directory.com
How To Get Free Publicity With Print Media
Getting free publicity maybe free in that you don't have to buy it, but there will be a bit of work in getting your publicity package prepared and the cost of the paper you write on, any photographs you send, and of course postage in mailing all your press releases and media kits.
Your first step in taking advantage of free publicity, is doing some ground work. Make a list of all the newspapers in your area—dailies, weeklies, newsletters, and the local television and radio stations. Follow them closely for several weeks, noting any stories about crafts or other local businesses. Read the style and content of each article and indicate where each of them appeared, so you'll know where to send your piece.
Many of the larger papers have an editor for each section of the paper.
- A feature story on the news pages should go to the city editor, if your article is about business or how your business is operating it should go to the business editor
- Something about fashion or other items for women should go to the women's editor.
- Gallery openings or craft shows are directed to the art editor.
- If your article is about you as an artist or craftsperson send it to the editor of the lifestyles section.
- You may find that some papers even have separate columns about crafts or shopping information which might mention your work.
- Try to come up with different angles and stories about you and your work and send them to the different editors of each paper. But, don't send the same story to different editors of the same paper.
You need to do some home work in getting free publicity. Take the time to find out the names of the different editors or columnists in each paper. They get so much mail each day, they are more likely to open an envelope addressed specifically to them.
Your next step is to prepare a written plan—set your goals and list the objectives that you want to attain. Some important objectives that you may want to consider could include:
- Let people know who you are and what it is that you do.
- Increase in your name recognition with existing customers.
- Put your name and image in front of prospects.
- Enhance your professional reputation among your peers.
- Enhance your reputation for your creative and technical skills.
- Generate repeat business from previous customers.
- Establish a new image.
- Remind your customers of how solid and respectable your current image is.
Once you have established your objectives and know the various groups of people you want to target your publicity to, plan a year-long strategy on how you are going to approach each media source, when, with what story angle and what you hope to accomplish with each article.
Use a large calendar and mark each activity or event you plan to attend or be part of. What holidays or upcoming events can you "tie-in" with an article about you or your products. Continually think of different angles and different ways that you can keep your name out front and in the papers.
Don't be afraid to even send press releases to other areas of your province or country as you may find that people from all across the country will pick up on the story and want to order some of your work.
Here is an example of how one lady was able to turn her business around with the use of free publicity: Elizabeth Spencer.
The Media Kit
Before approaching any media sources, you must produce all the written materials the media will need. Approaching the different media sources on your list will be easy, the real thought and preparation will occur in drafting and assembling the materials of your media kit. To help you in getting free publicity, see the following article on preparing a media kit: The Media Kit for Jewelry Artists
Return to top of Getting Free Publicity for Your Jewelry Business
Return to The Media Kit for Jewelry Artists
Return to Promoting Your Home Based Jewelry Business: the Art of GETTING NOTICED
Return to Beading Design Jewelry home page.