Managing: The News Media
Getting to Know You
Introduce yourself to local reporters and tell them about
your expertise as a jeweler. Then when the next jewelry scandal
hits, they'll probably call you first
So often when a jewelry "scandal" surfaces in the
news, jewelers find themselves talking by phone to a local reporter
they've never met. It doesn't have to be that way.
In the best of times, getting to know news reporters is good
business. Local newspapers always look for good stories, and
the jewelry world is full of fascinating tales.
In the worst of times, being acquainted with the reporter
who calls can mean the difference between trust and suspicion.
Here's how to go about it.
Identify the Key Media
Keep up with your local news media, and know where you'd like
to see your company name. Are you a fashion-oriented business?
Or is a mention about your store more likely to end up in the
business pages? The features section?
Make note of the names of reporters you see in print and hear
on radio and TV news programs. Then figure out which ones you
should get to know (business reporter, fashion reporter or lifestyle
reporter, for example) and, more importantly, who needs to get
to know you and your company.
Don't wait for them to call you make sure your card
is in each reporter's Rolodex so when there's a question, he
or she will call you for an answer. The best way to begin this
relationship is to send your local Savvy Reporter an informational
packet about your store, also known as a press kit. Include the
- A personalized letter to introduce yourself.
- A history of your store and any specialty products or categories
- Your professional history and biography, highlighting any
degrees, experience or additional education you have, along with
your local and national professional affiliations (make sure
your Jewelers of America membership tops that list).
- Sales brochures or copies of recent articles about your store.
This packet is your chance to "sell" the reporter
on your store and your standing as a jewelry expert. This is
the place to show off your store through facts and documented
information. It's not the place to brag or make unsubstantiated
Send your press kit and then call a week or so later and invite
Savvy Reporter to contact you when any questions arise and to
visit you at the store. Many reporters may not have the time
to respond immediately, but after you've made an impression,
they're more likely to think of you first when a question comes
Add the reporters you've contacted to your mailing list and
send them an industry update every few months. This update can
be brief, but include story ideas, industry information and trends
in fine jewelry (read trade magazines and go to their Web sites
for information and ideas. Also look for Jewelers of America
Market Updates, sent to all JA members as important news occurs).
Establish yourself as an expert in your industry and open
your door for further press opportunitie
By Caroline Stanley, Director of Marketing and
Communications, Jewelers of America
Caroline Stanley is a third-generation jeweler working as
the director of marketing and communications for Jewelers of
America, the largest U.S. trade organization for retail jewelers.
Call (800) 223-0673 for membership information. Caroline is a
past president of the Arkansas Jewelers Association, formerly
worked with the Platinum Guild International USA Jewelry and
won an award of excellence from the Women's Jewelry Association.
Copyright © 1999 by Bond Communications.