Case study - getting press for your jewellery business
Anna Campbell is our part-time Community Manager. Before retraining as a jeweller she was a lecturer in Psychology. As well as working for Jewellers Academy she also sells her silver jewellery in a boutique in Edinburgh, Scotland and runs her own jewellery teaching business, Jewellery School Scotland. Anna has had success in getting featured in the press and has some tips on how you can too.
I have been featured in the Scottish press including on STV, The Scotsman and the Daily Record newspapers. I’ve also been interviewed or written articles for magazines including Craft Business, Making Jewellery, Good Housekeeping, Huffington Post and Make and Sell Jewellery.
There are a few reasons why it is good to be featured in the press. Firstly, it can help people become aware of you and your business. It also helps to demonstrate your credibility as a jewellery artist or teacher. And it is great to have a news section and an ‘as featured in’ section on your website!
Here are my top tips for getting featured in the press
The first thing you need to think about is which publications to target. Don’t make the mistake of targeting the ones you read, you need to think about what your potential customers will read. It can be a good idea to start with local press, especially if you sell at local craft markets as this will be a good audience for you. The story of a local business person may be of interest to the editor. Remember to also think about blogs and websites as well as traditional newspapers and magazines. An online source is better for your SEO (search engine optimisation) - although it is more satisfying to see yourself in a physical magazine!
Find an angle
The fact that you have a new jewellery range is, unfortunately, not newsworthy. You need to think more laterally about how you can get coverage. What are you doing/have you done that is interesting? What expertise do you have? Do you use an unusual material? Is this a second career? Did you start your business from your kitchen table? Think about your skills and experience. You may want to ask a friend to help with this as we often have forgotten or discount our achievements.
An example is that I was interviewed for the Daily Record newspaper about the benefits of crafting for your health because I have expertise in the area of psychology and taught a course in the psychology of creativity. They listed my website at the end of the interview for those that were interested and I was contacted and given another paid opportunity because of this one article.
Do your research
You need to spend some time looking at the publication and see if there are any regular sections or topics that they cover. Perhaps there is a regular small business feature or a fashion feature you could pitch yourself for. Find out who writes this section or who the editor is. This is much easier now as journalists and editors have published email addresses (you can often find these at the front of the magazine or through a Google search). It is really worth spending the time on doing your research as they receive story ideas every day and you want to stand out.
What do I say?
Firstly, you need to remember that journalists and editors need stories so you are not bugging them by getting in touch. You may not hear back from them and that’s OK. They get many pitches every day so don’t take it personally. When you have another idea in the future contact them again.
Write them an email with the subject ‘Story idea - and what your idea is’
Write a couple of sentences on your story idea. Then write a paragraph about you. You should do it this way around so you get straight to the point. Finish off the email with the ways they can contact you. If it is time sensitive you may want to share your phone number and if it’s relevant attach some photos.
You shouldn’t write too much, get to the point but be ready to provide all the information they might need to write the story if they get back to you.
Volunteer for press opportunities
I exhibited and taught for the Stitching, Sewing and Hobbycraft show at the Glasgow SEC in 2017. As this was organised by a large company that had their own press and PR officer I volunteered to be featured in any press they generated. As a result of this I was featured in the Daily Record ‘My life in clothes’ which is a weekly section in the paper. I wouldn’t have had this opportunity without the contacts that the press officer had. I helped to promote the show and got some press myself so it was a win-win. If you do any big show, fair or exhibition do volunteer to be featured in the press as you can take advantage of their contacts and help them out too.
If you are teaching ...
If you are teaching I suggest trying to get a jewellery tutorial in a jewellery making magazine as it helps establish your expertise and the readers of these publications are your potential customers. In the UK I would approach Making Jewellery magazine to show that you are interested, the editor is Sian Hamilton and her email address is firstname.lastname@example.org. Tell her the type of jewellery you make e.g. metal clay, beading, wirework, resin, silversmithing etc. Making Jewellery magazine have a theme per issue so will contact you in advance of a deadline to get you to design and photograph your tutorial. You will also need to send your piece to them for professional photographing. It is a lot of work so make sure you give yourself time to do it but it is worthwhile.
Getting press is good for your business so it is worth putting the time and effort into finding opportunities. Thanks so much to Anna for sharing her advice.
Make sure you also check out our video podcast How to get your jewellery business featured in magazines for more great advice.
We’d love to hear about and share any press that you get for your business so do tell us about it in the Facebook group or tag us on Instagram @jewellersacademy