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We had a great show with host Penny Sansevieri discussing how to get great media coverage with special guest Liz Goodgold.

About our guest: Speaker and author Liz Goodgold is a fiery redhead with over 20 years of experience in marketing and branding. She is the author of RED FIRE BRANDING: Create a Hot Personal Brand and Have Customers for Life and DUH! Marketing.

Liz is a practicing “branding guru” having worked for such major clients as the World Trade Centers, Sharp HealthCare, Quaker Oats, Pfizer, and Univision, so that she knows what works and what doesn’t.

An often quoted expert, Liz has appeared in over 500 media outlets including ABC, NBC, CBS, CNBC, CNN, The Wall Street Journal, and The New York Times.

Visit her at, follow her on Twitter, @lizgoodgold, or email Liz at

How did you learn about PR and get covered?

Liz had to learn it on her own… and she started the easy way by responding to reporter queries. There are free services including HARO (Help a Reporter Out) and Reporter Connection. Instead of trying to pitch the media you respond to what they need. It’s a case of the early bird catches the worm.

Learn more about media pitching and leads from two of Penny’s Huffington Post blogs:

If you could give us just one piece of advice, what is it?

Practice with the smaller media and get good, (with your message, your speaking skills, etc.). Then you can hit a home run when the big media call.

What’s the difference between a paid and a free reporter query?

PR Newswire logo

PR Newswire logo (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

HARO is free, but there are paid services such as PR Newswire (which costs approximately $2,000 per year). The higher quality publications use the paid service only.

The paid sites have a smaller pool of responders. If you’re targeting the bigger media it makes sense to pay for a media leads service to ensure you will see their queries and can respond.

How should we to respond to a query?

Liz calls back immediately and says: Thanks for calling, what’s your deadline, can I get back to you in five minutes? She uses the five minutes to focus, get rid of distractions, and write some bullet point items to respond to the query. Then when she calls back she’s ready to offer a sexy, on-topic sound bite to the reporter.

Don’t wait to respond. Drop everything and anything to respond to the media, she adds.

What should we know about crafting subject lines?


Writing (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Liz likes sexy headlines that give readers a head’s-up effect. She calls it “R&D” – rip off and duplicate. Keep a folder of all the cool email lines you get and see if you can make them work for you.

Turn “Will I see you on Thursday?” into an upcoming seminar subject line that says: “Will I see you on Friday?”

If the email says “Five ways to boost your brand in business,” when responding to a query, use “Six secrets on how to sell” – this is more effective.

Remember: what’s in it for them? This is important to subject lines. You want them to open your email.

For leads services like HARO – make sure you give them a great subject line.

Create five to seven subject lines in your repertoire so you can be the fastest one to respond to a media lead.

If Liz is speaking to a reporter, she has already written an entire pitch, subject line and all. After hanging up with the reporter, she’ll get an email asking for more information on the topic. Her information is ready to go, making her a go-to source for reporters.

Pitch length: We’re in a multi-tasking world, we all have a lot of distractions, and this includes reporters. You have to cut through the clutter with a quick pitch. If you can’t write your pitch quickly it means you can’t boil down your pitch to the essential elements.

Use news as a hook to pitch. Tie your topic into something current.

How should we prepare for a live interview?

Realize that the interviewer probably has not read your book, or reviewed your advance questions. Be prepared for anything. Liz calls it the “Al Gore shuffle;” no matter what he was asked he did a masterful job of turning the topic to what he wanted to say.

Once, during a TV interview, Liz was not asked about her topic but to critique then-California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger’s campaign. Liz replied that she wasn’t familiar with the governor’s campaign but she would inform viewers of the secrets to making their marketing message resonate.

What are the secrets to successful interviews?

Write out what you’re going to say so you’re prepared in advance and can practice. Critique yourself, too, so you can get better.

Recognize where you’re comfortable: is it behind a computer? That’s a great match for blogs and social media. In front of a camera? If you look good on air then TV is an option. Good speaking skills? Radio could be your target. Evaluate your strengths and weaknesses honestly to determine the type of media you should seek.

Download the full show at:


Upcoming Episode:

We’ll be back May 15, at 4 p.m. Pacific, once again with Branding & Marketing Expert, Speaker and Author Liz Goodgold. This time, she’ll discuss Secrets to Creating Book Titles that Sell. Be sure to join us!

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