Promoting in the Media
For 75 years, Little League® has been about the local community, and the reason we are the largest youth sports organization in the world is because of the great, local league experience. Members of the print, online, television and radio media are always looking for a good angle to tell a story, and Little League’s 75th Anniversary is a great opportunity to celebrate our organization’s history and help your local league, which will help with registration.
Tips for Getting Stories Placed
FIND THE RIGHT OUTLET
Your local newspaper is a great place to go, but don’t overlook the importance of online media (Patch.com or similar local news site), radio stations, community newspapers and television stations. Ask your volunteers and parents if any of them work for a local media outlet or know of someone who does. Knowing a contact is a great way to get your message seen and distributed.
CONTACT THE RIGHT PERSON
It's always best to reach out to a real person and not a general email. If you can find a sports editor or a local news/community editor, that is great. Try not to contact Editor-in-Chiefs, as they are less likely to have the time to cover your event. For newspapers, online news sites and magazines, look for senior editors, managing editors or reporters at a similar level. For television and radio stations, look for news directors or sports directors.
If you’re having problems finding personal contact information, look for a masthead, or go to the About or Contact section of the media outlet’s website. If you’re still not sure who to reach out to, it never hurts to call the outlet directly and find the appropriate contact.
CRAFT YOUR MESSAGE
Media Alerts are perfect for providing quick information on an upcoming event. They should always include Who, What, Where and When. They should also include an interesting hook that makes media want to cover the event, for example, Little League’s 75th Anniversary, but be sure to include anything from your community that is noteworthy about the event, whether it’s your own league’s history or a milestone. It is also smart to include information about any special dignitaries (for example, if the mayor is attending your opening ceremonies) who may be part of your event. Supplying a hi-resolution digital photo for the media to use is another way to help get coverage of your event.
Press Releases are a little bit longer and written more like a story. They should also have all the details that a Media Alert has, only with more information and a quote from your league president or an official with the league, and presented in a way that a news outlet could use that release directly in print or online. They are great for sending out after your event, along with a post-event photo.
TIME YOUR OUTREACH
When you know the date and time of your event, you can start working on a plan to inform the media. If possible, send a media alert out two weeks before your event and re-send it two to three days before your event. Identify key media that you will reach out to directly the day before your event. Within a day after your event, send out a Press Release and a photo that shares event’s success. Follow up with media who covered your event, thanking them or pointing out anything that might be incorrect. If there is a media outlet that didn’t cover your event, but you would like them to cover future events, contact them after your event to provide more information and excite them about your local league.
For more resources on how you can help get more media attention for your local league, and for sample Media Alerts and Press Releases, please see the materials in the Chartering and Marketing Toolkit.
Need help with your Media Alerts and Press Releases?Download ready-to-use templates that you can share with your local media for your events: