Guest Post: 5 Ways to Build Your Contact List

Jas’ note: I’m happy to welcome today’s guest blogger, Alicia Lawrence. She’s a talented content coordinator and relationship builder. This post is sure to be one you’ll want to read through.

When a PR pro is asked what the most important part about their job is, any one of them would tell you one word: connections. Without the right contacts and connections in this industry, you simply won’t make it, it’s the honest truth. For emerging PR stars or even those who have been around awhile and are just switching to a different sector of PR, this thought can be very stressful and overwhelming. Just how am I supposed to make those connections? Believe it or not, with the technology and social media readily available to PR pros, it’s a lot easier to make those connections needed to make your client happy. Let’s go over some surefire, simple ways to build your contact list in your spare moments at work.

1. Social Media: Social media is the best way to find contacts and journalists in your area of PR. First of all, social media now makes it easier than ever to find the perfect person to send your pitch to. You can know their likes, dislikes, what they’ve written about in the past, just by seeing their past tweets! The best way to start a search for the contacts you’re looking for is to use a tool that enhances the social media experience. Some great ones are followerwonk, twellow and even Pinterest and Google+ search are great options to find who you’re looking for.

Once you’ve created a list of the bloggers, journalists and influencers you’d like to make your contacts, start interacting with them! Tweet them questions about or even compliments on their past pieces. Journalists love to talk about their work, and they’ll appreciate the effort you’re making in trying to get to know them instead of just pitching blindly. This can help you build a relationship and in the future, that relationship might be exactly what you need to land the perfect pitch.

2. Search Parameters: If you’re looking for a type of blog or journalist, sometimes the easiest thing and first step to do is simply “Google them”! By using some quick little tips through Google coding, you can make your search a lot easier. Did you know that if you put “quotes” around your search parameters, your results will only include those words? This can be a super helpful way of vetting your Google search before it even begins.

3. Blog Rolls: If you’re looking for a genre of blogs, blog rolls can come in handy. They’re basically lists comprised of all the blogs in a category. For example, say you’re looking to pitch Healthy Living blogs but aren’t sure where to start. This list can help you see how many blogs are available in the category and from there, you can narrow your pitch downs to the one who are best suited for your client.

4. Blogger LinkUp Newsletter: This is a very unique tool. This virtual newsletter component allows bloggers and PR pros alike to connect over a common network. It can help you reach a new audience and form relationships with the bloggers you’d like to pitch in a whole new way. It’s especially great if you’re really at a loss for where to start as there’s a lot of information available on the newsletter’s page as well.

5. Backlinks through Open Site Explorer: Like any good PR pro, you always need to be willing to do your research. Open Site Explorer allows you to take any link and see where it ends up. This can help you find out exactly where your competitors are posting and what the article was about. Once you have the background, you’re pitch can become a lot more solid to that website. Information is always key when pitching.

Alicia + Page

Alicia Lawrence is a content coordinator for WebpageFX and blogs in her free time at MarCom Land and CJ Pony Parts. Her work has been published by the Association for Business Communication, Yahoo! Small Business, and Spin Sucks.


About JasMollica

"It's never too late to have a life and it's never too late to change one." That's something I tell students, friends, and family all the time. After living and working in New York City, I took my own advice in 2004, switched my career from the television/radio industry and got into public relations. Now, I spend my days as a PR/social media marketing consultant and get inspired daily. It's been a good ride, so far. But the car has plenty of gas left. I hope you'll join along in this guy's journey!

Posted on September 10, 2013, in Guest Blog, Public Relations, Social Media and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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