Some may feel it’s too soon to talk about the C word, but whether you’re ready or not, Christmas is a crucial aspect of eCommerce, and it’s already making headlines in the news agenda. If you want to boost your digital PR efforts and increase sales, now is the ideal moment.
One effective PR tactic as Christmas approaches is to aim for product placements in relevant gift guides and roundups.
Christmas gift guides and product roundups are essential to any publication’s content calendar. Whether it’s national media outlets or lifestyle and women’s interest titles, you can be sure they’ll feature a section dedicated to must-have festive season purchases.
So, if you’re wondering how to get your product featured in your favourite online publication’s gift guide, we’ve compiled a short guide on how to make it happen:
Timing is important
The time to kick off your Christmas PR efforts is right now (September). Ideally, you should have begun planning your holiday PR strategy during the summer months. Journalists have already started compiling their Christmas gift roundups. However, the advantage of online roundups is that these lists are continuously updated throughout the autumn months, and live gift guides can be updated at a later date. That said, if you want to maximise your chances of getting your product featured in a dream outlet, it’s a good idea to start sharing product details with your target publications as soon as possible.
Choose your hero products
Selecting the right products to share with journalists is crucial. The products you pitch must align well with the publications. Rather than sending all your products to journalists, focus on your standout items that would make great Christmas gifts and pique journalists’ interest. Prioritise quality over quantity when choosing products for publication.
It could also be worth considering creating a ‘new’ product listing that is ‘just for Christmas’ utilising existing products, such as a Christmas hamper.
Draft a product overview
When sharing a product for a gift guide, ensure you’ve gathered all essential information in one place. We recommend creating a Word document and then copying it into an email for easy access. This information includes:
– Product name
– Product link
– Brief product description
– Key product specifications
– Special offer or savings percentage, if applicable
Including all this information is important as it ensures that journalists don’t have to keep coming back to you to gather more insights.
Have high-resolution images ready to go
A product description is only valuable if journalists can see the actual product. To ensure your product pitch stands out in journalist inboxes, prepare a bank of high-resolution images to share with journalists.
For accessibility, we suggest using Dropbox links to share images instead of WeTransfer, which can expire. This way, journalists can always refer back to the Dropbox link if they bookmark your pitch for later. Consider including one image within the email body to capture a journalist’s attention. Additionally, remember that journalists prefer product shots with plain backgrounds for easier integration into their articles.
Select the right contacts
Choosing the right journalists for pitching products in Christmas gift guides or roundups is essential. It ensures that your product reaches the right audience, resonates with their readers, and gains credibility through trusted journalists. The proper selection increases the chances of your product being featured.
To choose the right journalists for pitching products in Christmas gift guides or roundups, research media outlets that align with your product’s audience and theme. Look for journalists who have previously covered similar items. Tailor your pitch to each journalist’s writing style and interests, making it personalised and engaging.
Write a carefully crafted, personalised pitch
Of course, what the journalists really want to know for their gift guide is key product information. However, to really grab their attention, share with them why you think they’d be interested in the product and why their audience might like to see it in a gift guide. Demonstrating your research into their preferences can earn you big brownie points, boosting the chances of your product being featured in their gift guide roundup.
Monitor media requests
In addition to crafting a custom media list and conducting dedicated outreach to specific journalists, keeping an eye on media requests through Response Source or by monitoring the #journorequests hashtag on Twitter is worthwhile. If you already have your gift guide content prepared and are prompt in responding to these requests, you’ll find it easy to secure some great reactive coverage.
Set up coverage tracking
In the bustling Christmas season, journalists often receive a flood of pitches, and some may not find the time to respond to every PR inquiry, even if they’re keen on featuring your product. To make sure you catch all the coverage you get, it’s a good idea to set up media tracking. This way, you can easily spot every piece of coverage you receive during this busy time.
Prepare samples: Be prepared with product samples. Some journalists may request samples for review, which could lead to a feature in their articles. If sending samples isn’t feasible, consider offering alternative incentives, like an exclusive discount code for their readers.
Create unboxing experiences: To make a lasting impression on your wishlist contacts, consider creating unique unboxing experiences for your targeted publications. It’s a bold move that can pay off but always check with the journalists first to gauge their interest and ensure your products don’t go to waste. Providing something unique like this could secure coverage in a top-tier media outlet.
If you’re interested in seeing your product in some of the UK’s top media outlets but don’t feel you have the resources to spend time doing this, contact the Wild PR team, or book a 30 minute introductory call with Katrina Cliffe.