Do-It-Yourself PR – Tips, Tools & Templates

PR Tools

All the DIY PR tools you need

Do it yourself public relations?  Yes you can do it yourself and reap the rewards without hiring a high-powered and expensive PR agency. The emphasis here is on simple, practical do-it-yourself PR tips, public relations tools and useful PR templates that can help you get media coverage and publicity in a  big way. Don’t hesitate, jump right in…

And if you’re looking for more media relations resources try Media Relations/PublicityCommunity Relations and The PR Coach blog This Just In…. You can also go to The PR Coach’s PR Library for 30 other in-depth, public relations topics. And, if you just can’t do it yourself, don’t be afraid to talk to a freelance PR consultant, writer, PR Coach or a right-sized PR agency to help you get results.  Sites with a W are PR Coach “winners.”

PRoactive: The Public Relations Job Hunter’s Guide
Seriously looking for a PR job? Get PRoactive – the new book loaded with valuable strategies & practical tips on search tools, social networking, public relations resumes & portfolios, best PR jobs websites, much more.

9 Tactics That Can Amplify Your Press Coverage
Nine simple ways to improve media coverage.

10 Critical Press Release Writing Tips
10 tips that will help you get your news release right.

10 Tips for Moderating a Great Panel
This practical ice will help you produce an effective panel discussion.

10 Tips for Writing Your Story
Just the basic for writing effectively.

11 Steps to Successful Media Coverage
Social Change Media provides tips for better media relations and media coverage results.

13 Tips for Pitching Your Story
These 13 tips will get you pitching with the best.

15 Do It Yourself PR Ideas
15 public relations ideas to help kick-start your publicity.

22 Ways a Blog Can Rock Your Nonprofit’s Social Media Campaign
Though for nonprofits, John Haydon’s tips are valuable for all. 22 excellent ways to benefit from blogging.   W

54 Best PR Tips for Entrepreneurs
There are 54 ideas worth checking out. One may be just perfect for you.

A Practical Guide to Investor Relations: London Stock Exchange
43-page guide is packed with intelligence and essential tips for IR managers at public companies in any jurisdiction. Highly recommended reading.  W

A Publicity Primer
Kirk Hallahan’s excellent point-form tips are well worth studying. Note the 32 tips to getting publicity, news release and publicity materials checklists. W

A Simple Formula for Success
Learn what your most important audiences are thinking and then go about changing or modifying their perceptions and you will have PR success according to Robert Kelley.

A Winning Public Relations Game Plan
Bob Kelley writes about how to influence public opinion as a foundation for winning PR programs.

PR TRAINING
Learn how to launch a powerful, effective online PR program using guerrilla tactics from Marcia Yudkin’s report Powerful, Painless Online Publicity.

Advertising Versus Public Relations: What’s the Difference?
Ana Ventura talks about the basic differences and benefits of PR vs. advertising.

Amateurism hurts PR field
Andy Marken describes the pitfalls and pratfalls of PR amateurs.

Analyze your audience for greater PR results
Ana Ventura shows how audiences should be accounted for to deliver speaking success.

Big List of Free Press Release Distribution Sites
A list of more than 30 free news release distribution sites from Jennifer Mattern, though most have cost add-ons to get results.

Brushing Up on Some Press Release Basics
10 tips for better press releases from Ben Silverman.

Budget – Sample Outline for PR Program
Kirk Hallahan gives a sample budget plan to help you estimate costs for a PR program.

Campaigns Overview
Another Hallahan planning tool with a chart to help track progress according to standard public relations planning principles.

Care and Feeding of the Press
The Internet Press Guild’s Esther Schindler provides updated and comprehensive guide to media relations. W

Conducting Successful Public Relations and Media Interviews
Quick overview of PR programs and successful media interview tactics.

Creating a Big Buzz on a Small Budget
Public relations is a little like sex: Most people think they’re good at it. Few really are, but a small company can still get good PR itself according to BusinessWeek online.

Creating a Target Media List
Create a target media list before you approach the media. The effort you take to do this now will save you time, money energy and ensure the best results.

Creating Publicity Without a Big Media Buy
Good tips for the budget strapped.

Dealing with the Press
Richard Beamish has a comprehensive basic guide to media relations that’s an excellent primer.

Developing a Press Kit for Your Small Business
All about putting together a basic print press kit. Don’t forget digital.

DIY PR
Guy Kawasaki has 11 DIY public relations tips for entrepreneurs.

Don’t Blame Us… Some Areas Can’t be Controlled by PR Pros
Watch out for these hard to control pitfalls.

Effective Free Press Release Distribution in 5 Easy Steps
Five easy steps for free, effective news release distribution from Naked PR.

Entrepreneurs’ Exchange
An excellent source for free templates for PR, marketing, sales and other tools.  W

Event Planning and Organization
This checklist will help you plan an event for success.

Five Do-It-Yourself PR Tactics
Forbes offers five quick DIY PR tips.

Forget the Press Release – Here’s How to Pitch Like Roger Clemens
Your ability to sell your story to a journalist is what it’s all about. All the pitch basics from Bill Stoller.

Four mistakes that will land your press release in the trash
When you know not to do these things, results will follow.

Getting Stories on Local TV News
Basic how-tos for getting coverage on TV news.

Headline or Trash: How to Ensure Your Press Release is Used by the Media
Focus on what editors and readers will find most interesting and follow these three guidelines to ensure success.

How Does the Media Pick News Ideas? [Video 1:53]
Whitney Keyes tells some of the ways media pick story ideas.


How Public Relations Works

Learn how PR works and how to make it work for you or your business.

How to Bootstrap Your Public Relations
Solid DIY PR tips from Inc magazine.

How to Choose a PR Firm for Your Business
Define objectives; ask for referrals; ask for media referrals; screen by phone; set a meeting; look for rapport; know who will handle your account; and watch for warning signs.

How to Communicate with Journalists
Calling to report bias in TV news or dashing off angry letter to editor? Check FAIR’s advice on communicating with journalists by letters to editors, op-eds, and meetings with editorial boards or news management.

How to Create an Online Newsroom
Eight great tips to guide your start up newsroom.

How to Deal with the Press
Be honest; don’t duck; speak plainly; get bad news out fast; and tell the truth. Best ways to win says Rick Griffin.

How to Develop a Communications Plan
Nancy Rathbun Scott provides this detailed guide to a PR plan. Also useful are three different sample PR plans from PRSA, ARA and King County Library for reference. Worthwhile. W

How Do You Explain Public Relations to a on-public Relations Audience
Good PR is all about perceptions, communication and the resulting changes in behaviours.

How to Get Free Publicity for Your Business
20 ways to make your small business newsworthy from David Frey.

How to Get the Media to Cover Your Story
Keep the media’s needs, the reader’s needs, and your needs in mind, and your PR skills will be top-notch.

How to Get the Press on Your Side
No problem, just make yourself newsworthy says Shel Horowitz. Good basic tips for successful news releases.

How to Hack the PR Machine
7 steps to DIY public relations from [Inc] magazine.

How to Lobby
Though UK-flavored, some good tips to follow and key audiences you may not have considered.

How to Manage Your Own PR
Inc magazine shares practical tips on managing your own public relations.

How to Organize a Demonstration
FAIR provides tips on organizing an effective demonstration.

How to Organize an Event
Here’s a thorough guide to event organizing from Christian Aid.

How to Pitch a Story [Video 2:11]
Two senior Associated Press editors offer excellent advice on how to pitch a story.   W

How to Tell Your Story in the Media
Four hints to get the media interested in telling your story.

How to use Press Releases…to Get Free Publicity…
Frugal marketer Shel Horowitz tells how to get media coverage on the cheap.

How to Write a Comprehensive Public Relations Plan
Craig Miyamoto shows how to write a solid PR plan with an outline and description of the key sections needed in a good plan.

How to Write a Leaflet
Simple, how-to.

How to Write a Press Release
A thorough guide to writing a press release.

Is Your Public Relations Investment Paying Off?
Five steps, that can help you hit the public relations bullseye on your next public relations venture.

Make the Most of Media Interviews
Practical interview tips to help you make the most of media interviews from Grounds Maintenance magazine.

Making the Pitch [Video 1:37]
Whitney Keyes tells you how to pitch a TV show and what to include.

Manage Your Own PR
Practical DIY PR tips from Media Trust.

Managers Need Basic PR
An impactful public relations plan can deliver the behavior results you want.

Managing the Media: A Guide for Activists
Planning peace demonstration or blockade? Learn how to manage media and the story from Carol Fenelly and Community for Creative Non-violence in this very complete guide. W

Marketing Your Organization’s Website
Successful internet marketing is a never-ending process. New Web sites, newsgroups, lists, emerge regularly and others disappear. Track new sites to link and new lists to announce your organization says Jayne Cravens.

Media Interview Reminders
Rick Griffin provides a selection of helpful media interview tips and how-to suggestions.

Media Interviews
10 things to do and five not to do in a media interview from Ainsworth Maguire.

Meeting Checklist
Extensive meeting checklist will help you hold a successful event.

Meeting Planning Tools: Online Meeting Guide
Brief, simple tips for more productive meetings. Included are checklists for: focus groups, online training, press conferences, product launches, special events, town hall meetings, and training sessions. Helpful and practical. W

Model Outline for a Detailed PR Campaign Plan
CSU’s Kirk Hallahan provides a detailed outline for PR campaign plan for those who need guidance.

News Conferences – Communications Toolkit
Planning a news conference? Here’s how to make it pay off in media coverage from the WK Kellogg Foundation. Many other DIY PR resources.

News Releases
This practical news release how-to is from Michael Turney.

Nine Musts of a Good Press Release
Nancy Rathbun Scott shares nine good news release tips.

Op-Ed Checklist
Here’s how to plan, write and get your op-ed published.

Perfect Pitch [Video 0:56]
Kathe Stanton says the perfect pitch includes a concise subject line in your email pitch.

Planning Successful Events
This checklist will help you plan and deliver a winning event.

PR Helper
Excellent resource for free PR templates. Well worth reviewing.  W W

PR Tips & Techniques
Nice list of basic media relations tactics from PRMG.

PR Tools
Andy Marken has a list of PR tools to jog your thinking.

PR Tools Tell Your Story
Basic PR tools profiled and explained in simple terms to help you cut through the clutter if you’re doing it yourself.

PR Tools That Don’t Rhyme with Focus or Vision
Excellent rundown of useful PR tools and services by Jeremy Porter.

PS: For Business Communicators
This is Executive Communications Group’s newsletter with tips on effective presentations, better speaking and improved word choices.

Pitching a Story
Here’s how to pitch your story to the media effectively and a sample pitch letter.

Planning Form for Meetings
Use this checklist to back yourself up and get the job done.

Planning Successful Events
A practical, useful guide and checklist for planning special events from Media Trust.   W

Practical, Doable PR Tips for Small Businesses
Jackson Wightman offers useful PR tips biz can use.

Press Release Template
PRW has a press release template to help you write your own.

Press Releases and Fact Sheets
Learn how to use these essential DIY PR tools.

Public Relations: A Cost-Effective Marketing Tool
Internet News Bureau provides a list of usable PR tools: press releases, media interviews, editorials and guest columns, seminars and workshops, public speaking engagements, and special events.

Public Relations for Small Businesses: Interview with Robb Deigh
Good do it yourself PR tips.

Public Relations is for Every Small Business
Every small business can benefit from public relations. Here’s 10 ways to make it happen.

Public Relations Plan
NALC provides a sample plan and detailed guidelines for preparing and using a PR plan.

Public Relations Press Conference – Tips for PR Consultants
Need to plan a news conference? Here’s a refresher on how to do it right.

Public Relations Tips for Your Small Business
Steve Bolerjack provides useful small business PR primer to help you build your own PR program effectively.

Public Relations Writing Tips
Learn the basics of writing for PR for effective presentation and better results.

Sample Letter to the Editor
Here’s a simple, effective letter to the editor from the Mayors Wellness Campaign (MWC).   W

Sample News Release
A good example of a news release from MWC.  

Sample Op-Ed
A simple, effective op-ed article to use as a guide from MWC.   W

School Public Relations Strategies
NW Educational Resource Lab offers up basic PR tips and suggestions to guide you in doing PR yourself, especially for a school. Includes a sample plan.

Simply Stupendous Press Kits
Does your kit impress or perplex the media? Think substance.

The 10 Elements of an Effective Press Release
Nifty press release how-to by Krista Mohr with sample news release and links to the 10 key elements. W

The Art of Making a Splash Online
Want to rise above the noise online? Tell a dramatic story that explains how you’re different, focus on customer service, and let customers help tell your story.

The Power of Public Relations: A Basic Guide to Getting Noticed
Texas Commission on the Arts has extensive guide to PR including writing tips, checklists, how to build media database and much more. W

The Ten Most Common PR Mistakes
Alan Caruba says mind these common-sense things not to do and you’ll do better in your PR efforts.

Things I Wish I Knew When Securing a Celebrity Spokesperson
Practical PR advice worth studying.

Using Media Lists [Video 2:32]
Kathe Stanton shares practical tips on using media lists productively.


What Is Newsworthy About Your Business?

How to find the news in your business.

What Do Editors Need?
Tips to make your press release stand out.

What’s a Media Alert? [Video 2:19]
Kathe Stanton shows the ins and outs of media alerts, how to use them and how they’re different from news releases.   W


Why press releases fail: It’s the message, not the medium

No babble, no hype… you’ve got seconds to convince editor like Karen Klein of Business Week your story is worth considering. Her bad example press releases are worth a chuckle.

Why the media need you
Here’s why the media need you as a resource from Inc.

Year round public relations plan
Hitting the seasonal ebbs and flows will help you get publicity results according to Bill Stoller.

Photo credit: Robert S Donovan