I was bathing my six-month-old baby, watching him coo and splash in the tub, when like a lightening-bolt it hit me – Little Box of Rocks. I knew the entire concept in an instant: We would send healing crystals the way flowers are typically sent. It was both crazy and brilliant – and of course, I had to do it.
One year later, two months into business, I was sitting at my computer and sales began to skyrocket. Having set myself up with just enough inventory to sell 100 boxes total, it quickly became apparent that I would sell through this amount in a matter of hours. I became agitated wondering if maybe my website had been hacked. Still unaware that I could read web referral analytics on my system, I became so curious that I emailed one of my new customers to ask where she had found out about us.
“Goop!” she said. “Congrats on the placement!”
I ran out of my office screaming with excitement.
This is the story of how I developed and launched my brand, and it’s one that’s been told and retold in countless news articles time and again. Reporters love this story – not because it’s particularly mind-blowing, but because there is an element of surprise and novelty. It was a real life fairy-tale. Not every day does a stay at home mom launch a celebrity-endorsed brand out of her home. And guess who wrote it… ME!
My story could have been told in countless ways. But I knew from my time spent in journalism that reporters won’t write stories with an agenda of promoting a product or brand. They will however promote a brand inadvertently when their need to provide interesting content is met.
With deadlines to meet and content to fill, journalists are always on the hunt for stories that their readers will find interesting. Your job then as your own in-house PR agent is to find ways to fulfill this need with YOUR story.
Action # 1 | Write Your Fairy Tale
A great fairy-tale has three elements: An obstacle, suspense, and a happily-ever-after. Take a few minutes to imagine your story the way it would be presented in the media. Pretend that you are reading about it in a Forbes. Take a moment to envision how your story will be told, and then fill in the blanks.
Here are a few other questions to consider:
How did you come up with the idea for your company? Was there a specific moment of inspiration? What were you doing at the time?
What does your company or product do or sell that is entirely NEW (newsworthy)?
What is your purpose or mission? What positive impact do you wish to make?
Having your story prepared and ready is half the battle to getting your brand noticed by both journalists and customers.