Before the Internet came along, I built my entire career using publicity. People would hear me on the radio or see me on TV or in print. I always let it be known I was available to speak. One of my quotes hanging on the wall at my school is that the only way to exceed the average income in your profession is to become better known. Publicity does that for you.
NOTE: Complete transcript available at the bottom of the page.
Screw The Commute Podcast Show Notes Episode 280
How To Automate Your Business – https://screwthecommute.com/automatefree/
Internet Marketing Training Center – https://imtcva.org/
Higher Education Webinar – https://screwthecommute.com/webinars[02:55] Tom's introduction to Free Publicity [05:15] Publicity makes you more believable [06:32] Publicity can turn into direct sales [07:15] Be aware of “Pay for Play” [08:48] Help A Reporter Out (HARO) [09:35] Radio, Podcasts, TV, Print and Live
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Episode 280 - Publicity
[00:00:09] Welcome to Screw the Commute. The entrepreneurial podcast dedicated to getting you out of the car and into the money, with your host, lifelong entrepreneur and multimillionaire, Tom Antion.
[00:00:24] Hey everybody it's Tom here with episode two hundred and eighty of Screw the Commute podcast. Today we're gonna talk about publicity, how to get it and what it can do for you. And hope you didn't miss Episode two seventy nine. Rebecca Kirstein was part of Raise A Dream Week and she's very inspirational, a real go getter. You want to check that out. How would you like to hear your own voice here on Screw the Commute? If the show has helped you out at all in your business or giving you ideas that help you start a business, we want to hear about it. Visit screwthecommute.com and look for a little blue sidebar that says send a voicemail. Click on it and talk into your phone or computer and tell me how the show's helped you and also make sure you put your Web site on there. You'll get a big shout out on a future episode of Screw the Commute. Now grab a copy of our automation e-book. This book has saved me seven and a half million keystrokes. We figured that out a couple of years ago. So it's probably more than that and helps me take care of customers and prospects. Lightning fast. And that means more money in your pocket. So grab a copy of that. We sell it for twenty seven bucks, but you get it free for listening to the show at screwthecommute.com/automatefree. And while you're over there, grab a copy of our podcast app at screwthecommute.com/app and you can take us with you on the road. It does all kinds of fancy things and we've got complete training for you so you'll know what to do when you download it. Now we're still sitting here in the middle of this pandemic and work from home. Keywords are still going crazy on Google. People have to learn how to do this. Now, I've been preaching this since 1996. I've been selling on the commercial Internet since nineteen ninety four. And you really need to get these skills not only for yourself, but any young people in your life, grandchildren, children, could be one of the best legacy gifts you could ever give them because they can have a high paying career really within months. I mean we have students that are making money a couple months into our school. So you got to check this out seriously and get these skills and you won't be stuck dependent on somebody else all the time. So check it out at IMTCVA.org. You can do it distance learning. We hope later this summer to have in-house classes. We'll see how this pandemic goes. And just give me a call and I'll tell you all about a potential future for you or your loved ones on the Web.
[00:02:58] All right, let's get to the main event. Before the Internet came along. I built my entire career using publicity. People would hear me on the radio or see me on TV or in print. I always let it be known I was available to speak. Every time I was on the air or in print. And even before that, I had my entertainment company. And it took off like crazy after I got in The Washington Times and The Washington Post and Associated Press. But then you have the subject of cold calling. In the speaking business. People told me to make one hundred calls, get 10 leads and close one sale. All right. Well, I made one call and quit. Yeah, I know. There's people who were great at cold calling and who teach cold calling, and I'm certain it can work, but it's so totally against my philosophy and demeanor. I mean, I think I was ready to throw up after that cold call. My ideas that celebrities don't cold call. And one of my quotes hanging on the wall at my school is that the only way to exceed the average income in your profession is to become better known. Publicity does that for you.
[00:04:11] So why publicity? Well, for one thing, if you know what you're doing, it's free. You couldn't afford to buy that kind of time on television or radio or in print. Yeah, you can hire a publicist, but the guy no says the one thing a publicist guarantees you is that they will send you a bill. Also, if you don't know any better, let's say let's say they guarantee you 30 radio interviews. Well, that's pretty easy to do by booking you on crappy stations in Nowheresville, where you have two listeners and one of them is a cow. OK. So I'm only going to be talking about here publicity that you drum up yourself. And I'm okay with you having an intern or employee help with this, but I'm not suggesting getting a publicist unless you have money to burn. I mean, good ones start at five thousand dollars a month and can go up to 30 or 40 thousand.
[00:05:13] So, no, no, no, no, no. That's not for us. All right. Publicity makes you more believable to the public because they think the news or trusted outlet they're seeing you in or on has vetted you. It is kind of like wherever they hear about you is vouching for you. This is not even close to being true. I could put it, but it does make the listening or watching audience believe it's true. And you couldn't find a better example than Michael of Audie. He was all over TV hundreds of times in a very short period of time. All the while, he was being accused of ripping off his clients. There is even one case against him where he allegedly kept the settlement money that he was supposed to give to a disabled person. Well, we'll see how that case goes. But he's presently been convicted and serving time for extortion. Right. So the reality is that if if you play your cards right, any kind of rip off loser can get publicity. And of course, I'm not advocating that you be a rip off loser. I'm just saying the bar is pretty low. If you want to get some publicity for yourself. All right. Publicity can turn into direct sales if someone sees your unique product or service in a news outlet. You can be sure many people will buy it immediately. And also publicity. Like I said before, can mean a giant increase in your fees.
[00:06:51] Maybe you remember there were a bunch of reality shows about cosmetic surgery and cosmetic surgeons, mostly Beverly Hills types. Well, those surgeons were probably no better than any other plastic surgeon in Southern California. But by being on TV, people were flying in from all over the world to have their work done by those surgeons and at much higher fees. All right. Let's get into it, but before we do, I want to warn you about one facet of publicity and also another reason you really can't trust what you see on many shows. And that's called pay for play that you may have gotten an email saying, oh, you would be perfect for some airline in-flight magazine. And they tell you how many people look at each issue. Not really right this moment during the pandemic we're in. But but in general, they'll throw out some big numbers of people and they'll tell you how wonderful and important these people are and what being in the magazine will do for your credibility, blah, blah, blah. And then they say they only have one slot left at the discounted price of, say, I don't know, eleven thousand dollars. OK. So it's the same with TV. Much of the daytime and morning shows, I suspect even the big network shows, although they probably would never admit it. Much of it is pay for play.
[00:08:18] I was just on a show with some legitimate news, but the guy on before me had a foundation company. There was no news to his segment at all. He just paid to be on there and maybe it was worth it to him and maybe he had money to burn. But I virtually never participate in such a thing. It's far better to create real news and be newsworthy. So you get on for free and you're even more credible because you are providing real value to the readers, viewers and listeners. Now, a good place to start is HARO that stands for Help A Reporter Out. HARO. They send you an e-mail every day with journalists looking for comments on all kinds of topics. Now they do break it down to categories so that you can look at it each day much faster. For instance, I probably wouldn't be looking at the spiritual section. I hone right in on the business section and sometimes lifestyle section because I'm all about lifestyle businesses. Now, in the beginning, if I were you, I'd entirely look through each issue for a couple weeks to see all the kinds of stuff they look for and then narrow it down later when you see where your time is best spent. I've got some pretty good media hits from Harrow. So now let's break things down into formats for publicity. I'll talk about radio, podcasts, TV, print and live.
[00:09:44] Let's start with radio. See, radio is good because you pretty much have captive listeners. You have people driving in cars, not screwing the commute. They're listening for long periods of time. And this brings up an important point about people going to work and coming home, which is called drive time. And it's from about seven to nine in the morning and from 4:00 to 6:00 in the evening on weekdays. So if you're talking to a radio producer and they say, well, they have an 8:00 a.m. slot and a 10:00 a.m. slot available, you do everything you can to take the eight a.m. slot. And I don't care what time zone they're in. Take the 8:00 a.m. slot in their time zone. Even if it means you have to get up at four thirty a.m. to be on at five a.m. your time, you will probably have three times as many listeners than you would at the 10 a.m. slot. Also right at the beginning of your interview, expand your audience. I learned this from the great media trainer, Joel Roberts. And let me tell you a story about my Wake Him Up business presentation. This book so is going through his media training. And he said, OK, I'll be the interviewer and you go ahead and start pitching your Wake Him up book. And so he said to me, So, Mr. Antion, tell me about your wake him up business presentations book. And I start rattling off all. It's great if you want to get raises in this and that. The other he says at stop, he says you just cut out all the mothers and the grandparents and everybody else that's not in business. So we switched places and. And he said, I'll pretend to be you. And so I said to him, Joel, I said, Joel, tell me about your wake him up business presentations book. And he said, oh, it's way more than a business presentations book if you have kids in school or college or grandchildren and anybody that needs to be a good communicator so they can get a great career or if you are in business. This book is great. Right. So so right there, folks, is a multi-million dollar point for you right there. And I got it from Joel Roberts. I expanded the audience right off the bat. See where Joel used to be a talk show host. One ratings point could mean a million dollars to the station. So if he brings on a dud of a guess, that keeps the audience real narrow, he wants to get you off of there as soon as possible. But if you show him right off the bat, you just triple his audience size. He's going to keep you on much longer because you're acting like a pro and you know what you're doing.
[00:12:26] It's just one of the tips there. So expand your audience right off the bat. So try to listen to the show on other days prior to your in an interview. Maybe you have to listen on their Web site if they're located in a different city than you're at. Pay attention to when the breaks are and help tease them. If you can see it teases some juicy thing, you're going to tell them. After the break to get them to hang onto the station and not change channels and come back after the break. You might say something like, I know we have a break coming up. If you have a pencil handy when we get back, I'm going to tell you the greatest secret on earth. We know whatever it is, that suture your topic. So the host is going to say, oh, my God, I got a great pro on here because you're doing this. They and they already think you're a pro for expanding your audience, which always leads to repeat appearances when they know when they see your name. Oh, he or she was great. We'll have him back and say, I mean, I've been on some shows 13 times. OK, so so this is really powerful. So next, you can provide a list of sample questions about your topic and like every media coach tells you this.
[00:13:45] All right. But what they don't tell you is the put the amount of time it takes for you to answer. So let's say the host knows they have a hard commercial break in 60 seconds, and you have a question that takes 15 seconds to ask and 40 seconds to answer. The host can easily pick that question. And again, they're going to think you are a super pro and probably have you back. I podcasts are really taken off and have been for the last couple years. I mean, listenership has exceeded XM Satellite Radio. New cars can play podcasts right from their dashboards. And in-home devices like Amazon's Echo and Google Home represent more than one hundred and fifty million homes that can play podcasts just by asking them. Now, it's great to have your own pod cast for publicity and will have other episodes about that. But it's also great for you to be on other people's podcasts. And the nice thing about podcasts from a publicity standpoint is that they last a long time. A year from now, someone may listen to you on someone else's or your podcasts. It's also much easier to get on podcasts because there are so many of them. There are podcasts, booking agencies, which I would say are a little better than a publicist. But you still might get booked on a lot of little shows that you could have easily booked yourself.
[00:15:10] I have a couple episodes talking to podcasts, booking agencies. I don't remember the numbers. Look back through our list at Screwthecommute.com. If you want to hear about podcasts, booking agencies anyway, you can do giveaways on other people's podcasts to build your list. And I always give the host an affiliate commission if someone buys something because of my appearance on their show. I even have a page just for podcasts host to show them what I'll do for their show and how they can make money from my appearance and I'll put a link to it in the show notes at screwthecommute.com/podcasthosts. Now, you should have a page like this to impress podcast hosts. So they want to book you on their show and you can have the same one for radio. Now move on to TV. That's a different animal. The great media trainer, Starley Murray, demands that you make your appearance on TV visual in some way. Don't be just a talking head. You can provide graphics, B, roll and B roll. Is that a video that plays wow. You're talking that illustrates what you're talking about. Again, having this available makes you look like a pro. Some stations will use the graphics and B roll and some won't. But offering it makes you look very professional, like you're an old hand at this. Now, you could make it visual with props and even with what you wear, like Matt Lesco the guy who always wears a suit with question marks all over it.
[00:16:43] Now you'll need makeup for TV whether you are a guy or a girl and you want to be careful not to wear any distracting clothes. No, no jangly jewelry that will make noise and reflect light. No clothes patterns on your clothes or pinstripes that make weird shimmering patterns on TV. Starlee also says take a picture of yourself from the side to see what you look like. You will be seen from the side by the cameras because you're talking to the host. Make sure they can see your eyes and that you're perfectly fitted. Suit doesn't pull all over the place because they put two transmitter packs on your belt or skirt for the microphones. Nowadays, with this pandemic, that side stuff isn't as critical, but you do need to set up a nice background for get a good webcam and here's a really big tip. Look at the web cam. Don't look at the picture of the host on your screen. At the very least, move the host's picture as high as you can just under your webcam. If you don't force yourself to look right into your webcam, the viewer will see a very odd picture of you looking just slightly away from the camera that makes you look shady or a liar or just weird.
[00:18:07] Also, always sit forward in a hard back chair. Trust me, you will look way better on TV that way. Now, TV isn't nearly as good as radio for promoting your stuff. Now radio people will say your Web site and usually promote the heck out of you, but not so with TV unless it's pay for play. And even then, they won't push you very much. Also, it's really a pain in the neck to do TV. You have to go there, except now during the pandemic you don't, but you've got to get dressed up, look great and you could easily get bumped off. Some breaking news happens if I have to do a New York appearance. It pretty much costs me a thousand bucks to get there, get a cheap room. Costs me two days out of the office. I got to get around town and eat. And it's just, you know, it's a lot of work. So it better be worth it. And you've got to remember, you could get bumped for breaking news. Now, if you do get on TV. Be darn careful at the station. There are wires and other things that trip on and knock over all over the set. Now, you don't want your first appearance on TV to be you tripping and knocking over the weather. Right now, let's talk about print. There aren't as many outlets for actual printed publications as there used to be.
[00:19:26] Now, this is not necessarily a bad thing. Most of the print publications have either gone completely online or have an online version. This means tremendous opportunity for you. Let's say you get something into the Wall Street Journal online, but you don't make it into the print version. You can still say totally legitimately you were in The Wall Street Journal. Also, the online version will stay up there way longer than a one time appearance in the paper version. And the space limitations aren't really critical in the online version. Also, you can get a clickable link, which will get you way more traffic than if you were just in a printed version and someone had to go to their device and type in your link address. Now, let me take a sidebar here. Do not and I emphasize do not fall prey to the fraudulent technique. The scammers are pushing for you to advertise or comment in a publication and then claim you were in the publication. Lots of times these scammers encourage you to put the logos of the publications on your site with something like seen in the L.A. Times or Chicago Tribune in the Light. This is fraudulent. You are trying to convince the general public that you were featured in those publications and you were not. You just advertised or commented like anyone could do.
[00:20:55] And you're a piece of garbage if you do what I just described, and I hope the Federal Trade Commission sues you. Back to print. I'm just going to call it print and online together, since they're melded pretty much together nowadays. One thing that will help you out tremendously is to know in advance what the publication you're targeting plans to cover in a certain issue. Virtually all of them put out an editorial calendar. This is a tool that they use to sell ads related to the content of a particular issue. And it's also good for you. So you know when to pitch them. Let's say you had a public speaking product or technique and you were approaching a leadership publication. Well, you say you are you see from the editorial calendar, they will be covering communication skills in their November issue and that submissions have to be four months in advance of the publication date. That means your article needs to be a done deal in July and you should have been approaching them well before that with a query letter, which I'll cover in a minute. Now, what I discussed with the four months lead time is more traditional print publications and could be more accelerated in today's atmosphere. I just don't want you to wait until the last minute and then wonder why no one is responding. I query letters, will many publications that accept contributions.
[00:22:26] Don't want your entire article. Until they know they want it. If you look hard enough, you can find a particular publication, submission, guidelines. Some will want your entire article and some will not. The ones that don't will usually say something like. Queries should be sent to and then whoever wherever they tell you to do it. Just do what they tell you. Also, there's plenty of online resources for telling you how to write a query letter. So Google at. Now to have the best chance of success. Mention how your article fits into their communication issue. And right there, you're telling them that you know what you're doing because you didn't pitch your public speaking article in their hiring issue, for instance. Also, pay attention to word count. If you look at their back issues in all their articles are about 500 words with one picture and you pitch them a fifteen hundred word article with eight pictures, you just shot yourself in the foot. Now, here's one way around that you could pitch a three part series with each part being around 500 words with one graphic. That'd be cool. OK, here's a sidebar about sidebars. If you can't get a full article accepted in a print publication, you may be able to get a sidebar accepted. This might be a simple seven steps on something that's in a little box on the side of the page.
[00:24:05] You still get credit in the sidebar and you still can legitimately claim that you were in the publication. Now, before we get into the last really cool method to get publicity, I have a complete e-book on the subject called How to Be a Kick Butt Publicity Hound. I've been I've been on radio and TV all over the world. And this book tells you how you can do it, too. I collaborated with Joan Stewart. She's known as the publicity hound who included an even bigger perspective that will work for just about anyone who wants free publicity. Now you can get a free excerpt and a table of contents by just stopping by the show notes for this is episode two hundred and eighty. We'll have a link there for you. All right. Let's get into our last topic live. Publicity. One time I was just in the audience at an event and the seminar leader mentioned that I was there and I hold twenty thousand dollars worth of mentorships and I didn't even speak. So if you can contribute to a live event and when I say live now, it might be an actual live event or a virtual live event like a Facebook live. You might get mentioned or you might be asked to contribute a comment which establishes you as an expert and some of the entire credibility of the event rubs off on you.
[00:25:29] You can even get publicity from your clients and students if you have them.
[00:25:33] Whenever I see one of my students has a live event, I pop in and they invariably say something like, wow, I'm honored. One of my main mentors is here.
[00:25:41] Thanks, Tom, for stopping in.
[00:25:44] Hey, if I'm not too busy, many times they ask me to comment, which again puts me in front of people who may never have heard of me.
[00:25:51] If someone hires me, of course, I give my student a commission on the sale. Now, another thing you can do is be part of panels, which, again, get your name and credentials out in front of lots of people and you don't even have to work up an entire speech. So go out there and get some publicity. It can have enormous benefits for your business and turn you into a celebrity. And what do they say? You be a celebrity in your own mind? Not really.
[00:26:21] You can be a real celebrity in your niche. So get that free excerpt of my publicity e-book and get your name out there. I'll catch you all in the next episode. See ya later.
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