Piping Up A Success For Charity PR Client; Scottish Schools Pipe and Drums Trust

by Raymond Notarangelo

Friday, January 27th, 2017

What would be your first thought if you had to write a media release for your business or organisation?

Probably more than a slight fear; certainly a job that would go to the back of the To Do list in that classic avoidance mode we adopt when we are faced with something unpleasant or daunting – and once you got into it, a task that could swallow up a half a day or more as you torture over an opening sentence or killer quote.

So, once you got over all those hurdles, think how galling it would be to then see your release crash and burn – shunned by editors and overlooked by any website as your efforts are deemed uninteresting?

That’s the scenario that confronted the Scottish Schools Pipes and Drums Trust (SSPDT) when they put out a release on what they considered as a seriously significant piece of news about their charity.

A few weeks later – and in our expert hands – the same subject matter scored 20 items of coverage, appearing in the likes of The Scotsman, The Times, The Herald and Daily Record.

So, what was the secret we have to make magic with the media?

As you would expect from an award-winning PR agency, with more than 15 years’ experience, we know a thing about how a good PR works and how to get our clients in the media.

See here for our essential guide for any business keen to know how public relations really works:

https://www.holyroodpr.co.uk/whats-the-story-public-relations-glory-heres-a-tale-about-businesses-enjoying-pr-success/

But for the specific needs of the SSPDT – and indeed as a basic mantra for how we handle any request to get a client coverage – it really boils down to two things: story telling and timing.

See here for our guide on why successful story telling works: https://www.holyroodpr.co.uk/whats-the-story-public-relations-glory-heres-a-tale-about-businesses-enjoying-pr-success/

With SSPDT it also helped that we had developed a strong relationship with them in the past – not least for our work in helping to make their bagpipe amnesty hugely successful

This time round the SSPDT – which supports the development of piping and drumming and the creation of pipe bands in schools – called upon us to help promote their annual Scottish Schools Pipe Band Championship.

To give the event a strong platform; build the credibility of SSPDT and awareness for the Championships, we convinced the SSPDT to let us repackage a previous media release that failed to get any media coverage. It was a story on how the SSPDT was pledging to double its funding to support tuition – up to £500,000 – in schools.  One of their team had drafted a media release and looked to have it issued via a media agency. It failed to get any coverage.

We reworked the release ensuring that it had a new high impact intro, eye-catching content and punchy quotes.

Crucially, we also carefully positioned and timed the distribution of the release to go out between the Christmas and New Year period, specifically just ahead of Hogmanay – allowing us to link in with the traditional association of the pipes and drums with New Year celebrations.

The results amazed the SSPDT, who feared their chance of showcasing their charity’s huge contribution was lost and with it the chance to showcase the Championships:

  • 20 items of media coverage – 5,564,899 opportunities to see
  • Key national coverage with The Times, The Herald, The National, The Courier, and Press and Journal sharing the story.
  • Those important national outlets also contributed to fantastic online coverage – accessing readers that receive their news from either platform.
  • Further online coverage with the Daily Mail, BT and Evening Telegraph all publishing the story on their websites.
  • Regional coverage in the Cumbernauld News and the Mearns Leader.

We are now planning our media campaign for the Scottish Schools Pipe Band Championship taking place in Edinburgh in March.

Be sure to keep an eye on our website for further updates on our successes for SSPDT.

DO YOU HAVE A BUSINESS WITH A STORY YOU WANT TO SHARE?

If you are looking to secure a raft of positive publicity but have been thwarted because you don’t know how to right a media release, get in touch with our award winning PR agency in Edinburgh.

We believe stories are at the heart of every business – and if told in an engaging way to the right people help businesses to be more profitable.

If you’re interested in finding out more, get in touch on 0131 561 2244, or by using the contact form below:

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