Is Local or National Media Coverage Better?

I have a limited budget to conduct publicity and media relations for a new home design product my company is launching.  Initially, the product will only be available at retail locations in certain states in the U.S.  Is it more effective to focus my media relations efforts on national consumer magazines or local newspapers and regional magazines?

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By Kayleigh Fitch, Guest Blogger

Ultimately, you will achieve the best results conducting publicity and media relations with both national and local media.  But, if you are forced to choose, there are several things you should consider before making a decision:

What type of coverage do you want to see?

National consumer magazines are more likely to include minimal product coverage – a product photo and caption or brief description of your product and its primary benefit to readers.  In addition, your product will be competing for the spotlight with five to ten similar products on the same page and potentially hundreds in the entire magazine.

Daily and weekly newspapers (with the exception of national papers like USA Today, Wall Street Journal and New York Times) are more likely to develop an accompanying story or feature fewer products in one article with a common theme.

What is your primary marketing goal?

If your goal is to create national brand awareness, national consumer magazines will have the greatest impact on a wider audience.  While most daily and weekly newspapers and regional magazines only reach a general metropolitan area, and therefore build brand on a market-by-market basis.

By targeting local publications there is greater likelihood media coverage may also include information on where consumers can purchase your product locally, ultimately supporting sales goals and supporting sales in brick-and-mortar retail stores.

The trade-off, then, is between building strong brand recognition nationally and supporting sales efforts at the local level.

Do you want to drive retail or website traffic?

Finally, you should consider whether it is beneficial to drive consumers to your website or to local retail outlets to learn more about and possibly purchase your product.  If consumers are likely to want to touch and feel your product before purchasing, using locally targeted publicity to drive consumers to brick-and-mortar locations will be most useful.  On the flip side, a product that consumers can learn enough about without physically experiencing it can be very successful online, and national publicity will be the best resource to drive website traffic.

To initiate a national or targeted  consumer publicity and media relations campaign, contact me at kayleigh at sweeneypr.com or 440.333.0001 ext. 105.

Jim Sweeney

Jim is a veteran of the agency industry and the founder of Sweeney. He is uncommonly passionate about the idea of creating and implementing insanely great marketing campaigns that achieve insanely great results. He pioneered the full-service, full-circle agency model and continues to forge new ideas in an ever-changing industry. And he is accessible to everyone about anything, seemingly all the time, serving as a mentor to all agency personnel and clients.