Getting your fundraiser picked up by the media is a great way to raise more support within your town or city. The PLEDGE IT team put together a few helpful tips to increase the likelihood that your story gets covered by the media.
1. Contact Local Reporters, Bloggers, and Influencers
The trick in getting your fundraising campaign covered by media is to find the right people who have written or reported on a similar topic in the past. Create a list of TV reporters, bloggers and influencers in your community that would find your fundraising campaign interesting and unique. The chance of having your cause covered by media will increase if you can present a topic that is of interest to the reporter or writer.
Use email first to contact media but always follow-up with a phone call. Leave a message if no one picks up your call. If no one responds to your first email, try again.
2. Create an Engaging Pitch
Once you create a list of reporters to contact, draft an engaging pitch. Keep in mind, writers and reporters see hundreds of stories everyday so make your pitch short but substantial. Spend some time researching if there is a recent story that might relate to your fundraising campaign and the cause. Put yourself in the shoes of a writer and reporter and ask yourself these questions?
- Why is my story and cause important to the community?
- Why would someone care about my fundraiser?
- Why should someone read my story and pull out their credit card to make a pledge?
Remember, the best pitches are short and concise. You can use the below email pitch template to help you get started.
SUBJECT: [insert an attention-grabbing subject line that will get someone to open your email].
EMAIL PITCH: Hi [insert name],
In anticipation of the upcoming [mention the game or event for your fundraising campaign], I wanted to make you aware of a charitable fundraising campaign being run by [mention the team, athlete, or individuals involved]. [Use one to three sentences here to talk about the cause and fundraising campaign. Be genuine and explain why you are reaching out and how they can help spread the word.]
To support [mention the cause here], [name of team, athlete or individual] has launched a PLEDGE IT campaign where fans can pledge a donation toward every [pledge stat] recorded in [name of game or event]. [Name of team, athlete or individual] is challenging fans and members of the [town or city name] community to help raise money in order to support [mention the cause again]. You can visit the fundraising campaign at: [insert fundraising URL].
If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to contact me. I look forward to hearing from you. Have a great day!
3. Post on Social Media
Local news organizations are increasingly using social media sites, such as Facebook and Twitter, to find interesting stories. Reporters and writers are actively looking for new stories.
We suggest posting your fundraising campaign on media channel Facebook pages. Remember, don't just copy and paste your fundraising link on their page. Take a minute or two to write a short description about your campaign and always end with a short ask. For example, you can ask "Would you be interested in learning more?" For Twitter, we recommend tagging them in any of your tweets. Don't forget to follow any media channel.
Since 2014, PLEDGE IT has helped professional athletes in the NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL, MLS, and Olympics support their favorite charities, as well as countless colleges, high schools and youth teams.
PLEDGE IT has also worked with large charities such as The American Cancer Society, UNICEF, Big Brothers Big Sisters, Children’s Hospital Of Philadelphia and the Ronald McDonald House and has been featured on ESPN, USA TODAY, Fox Sports, MSNBC, Sports Illustrated and Ellen DeGeneres Show.