When you get an interview, don’t ask the reporter to print your website address in their article – you’ll just annoy them. A lot of reporters chafe at the idea of “promoting” the people they are quoting as experts. That may sound silly, but they do not want to be seen as giving you free advertising. If you push, they may push back. That might mean leaving out information about your website or your business, or leaving you out of the story entirely.
There is a better way: Give them a good reason to include your URL in their story. Here are five different ways that are likely to work:
1. Identify your company by your URL. Instead of saying your company is My Really Cool Company, call it MyReallyCoolCompany.com. Amazon now goes by just plain “Amazon,” but in their early days they referred to themselves as “Amazon.com” to remind everyone that they were an online business and exactly how to find them. Even though there isn’t novelty in being an online business any longer, remind people of your URL by referring to the URL as your business name.
2. Offer free information at your website. It could be a free report, video or online course. I got the URL of my website in a New York Times article by mentioning to the reporter that I have a free email course available there.
3. Offer a free service at your website. Can visitors sign up for a free webinar, or get a free consultation or other service? Mention it.
4. Offer free checklists, quizzes, games and other interactive tools. People love them. The media will be happy to tell their audience about the resource and people will come to your website to try it out.
5. Hook them in the interview, reel them in on the website. Give the reporter several tips on how to solve a problem, and then tell him that he and his audience can find 17 more tips at your website.
Your goal is to make the reporter WANT to share your URL, rather than begging her to share it. Offer something interesting and free, useful and free, or cool and free, and you are on your way to getting your URL in the story. Oh, and did I mention it should be free?
Your interesting offer is the call to action—it is how you not only get your URL into the story, it is how you get readers to visit your website.