Getting On Holiday Gift Guide Lists
The holidays may still be far away to some folks, but retailers and media alike are already getting ready for this special time of year. During the summer months, most magazine publications are already looking ahead to their Fall and Holiday issues, therefore planning what products and stores they will mention to their readers. Savvy retailers and wholesalers know not to miss out on this incredible exposure, so their efforts are also taking place to get on a holiday list… or two or three. The question is, are you one of these savvy folks?
If you are, be sure to identify that you are accomplishing each of the steps below. If you are not, review these steps and get busy reaching out to the media! The circulation of magazines, reach of TV and exposure of select online outlets if well worth your efforts.
1. Determine what it is you want to promote as a great “gift”. This can be a product or a collection of products, as well as a service sold. Gift certificates are also great to promote for retailers.
2. Identify what media outlets you feel this would make sense in – and be sure to review their editorial calendars and call for submissions if available. This can often be found on their websites.
3. Find the most appropriate section editor or direct contact that you can per your media outlet. This may be included on their website, or you may need to use social media to get a contact name. Be persistent, as finding the right person can make all the difference.
4. Contact the right person via email, followed by a phone call a couple days later. Include a strong visual of the product or store you are pitching. A brief and a concise overview of what it is. Include product / store / service details, price, availability, and interesting facts.
5. When requested, send samples. Often these may not be able to be returned, but the cost of samples vs. the amount of exposure you may make is well worth it in most scenarios. If you don’t feel like the sample request is worth-wild for you, understand this may mean not gaining the press.
6. Follow up immediately to all media requests. Even though you may be busy, drop everything to get back in touch right away. An hour or a day that you do not connect when approached by the media may mean another product, person or service has been chosen.
7. Get press!!! One of the best parts about this entire process is seeing the reward of press come through. Remember… stay focused on pitching to the right media outlets so you are more likely to gain press. Pitching the wrong outlets is a waste of your time… and your chances.
8. Gain sales! While gaining press is exciting, seeing sales come through as a result is even more exciting. Be sure to promote the press you received via social media, your website, e-blasts and more to help build the excitement.
There’s no time to waste. It’s time to start pitching!
Speaking of press… Retail Minded Magazine is seeking the best gifts for retailers to sell and for retail owners to want to buy themselves! Think you have a product that is perfect for busy retail store owners in their own lives? Think it also sells well in boutiques? Do you sell a service or offer online shopping in your fab store? All submissions should be sent to email@example.com. Due to the large amount of inquiries and submissions received, we can only follow up with those we are considering for our Holiday Gift Guide. Thank you for your understanding.
Picture: Artemesia, a popular home & lifestyle store located in Geneva, IL. They are known for their vast assortment of stylish products and as a great place to shop for gifts.
What advice would you offer to publications seeking items for consideration for a gift guide?
Great question. I would consider the following:
1) Is the product ideal for your niche audience?
2) Is the product easily available to your audience – either in a local store or online?
3) Are there any details about the product that may cause conflict / concern from your readers, such as made overseas or above their preferred price range to shop in?
4) Is the packaging professional of the product, and is the product priced fairly?
I hope this can help you in your product assortment! – Nicole, Retail Minded