Do you want more traffic to and sales in your Shopify store? One of the most effective ways to do this is by getting your products and online store featured in the media!
Whether it’s in national magazines, local publications, on TV or on influential blogs, publicity can help to increase your sales, put your brand on the map and build a loyal following of fans and customers.
However, most e-commerce entrepreneurs think that they need connections or a big budget to get media attention. This couldn’t be farther from the truth! While knowing an influential blogger or a magazine editor can be extremely helpful, it’s not necessary.
Did you know that media outlets also do their own research and search online for products to share with their readers or followers? This is where having your own media-ready Shopify store can put you at an advantage.
However, you shouldn’t wait for them to find YOU. Instead, you should set up a system where you are regularly reaching out to the media, connecting with them and pitching your Shopify store.
Here are five ways to get more publicity for your Shopify store…
1.Pitch your brand to a local magazine
Local publications LOVE to write about companies and brands in their city or town, so why not have them write about yours? This is often the easiest and most effective way to start getting your brand and products featured in the media.
Once you’ve identified the local publications you’d like to be featured in, check out their websites or get a print/digital copy of the magazine to find out who is the right contact person. Some local publications have editors for specific sections of the magazine (Fashion Editor or Food Editor, for example), while others don’t.
Think about the section that your products would be the best fit for and find the editor for that section. If your local publication doesn’t have a specific section editor, you can reach out to the Editor-in-Chief, Senior Editor or Associate Editor and pitch your products via email.
When emailing them, make sure to mention that you are a local business owner who would love to be featured in one of their sections (be specific about which section you’d like to be featured in). Keep your emails short and to the point and offer to send them samples of your products so they can test them or take photos for their publication.
2.Do a product review with an influential blogger
Once you’ve practiced your pitch with local publications, it’s time to expand and start reaching out to influential bloggers in your niche. Many bloggers have thousands (or tens of thousands) of readers and followers, so getting your products reviewed on an influential blog can bring a lot of new traffic, sales and fans to your Shopify store.
Once you’ve identified 5-10 relevant influential bloggers to reach out to, it’s time to connect with them on social media. Follow them on social media and then like and comment on their Facebook posts, re-tweet their Twitter posts, re-pin their pins on Pinterest and let them know how much you enjoy their content. This way, when you pitch them via email, they might already know who you are because you’ve showed your support of their work via social media.
Once you are familiar with their content and you’re sure that your products are a good fit for their readers, it’s time to reach out via email and introduce yourself. Keep your email short and to the point, let them know how much you enjoy their content and ask if they are interested in doing a product review or giveaway with your brand.
If they are interested, they will usually ask for a non-returnable product sample – respond to them in a timely manner and make sure you provide them with the information they need.
Once your review or giveaway goes live, make sure to be available on social media for any comments or questions from their readers.
3.Pitch your brand to a national magazine
If you think that a mention in a national magazine is only for brands with big budgets, think again! You can get your products in a big name magazine without connections or a big budget! The process is very similar to that of pitching your brand to a local magazine, but the lead time is a bit longer.
National magazines work about 3-6 months in advance of the issue publication date (this is also known as the “lead time”), so if you’d like to get your products featured in their December issue, for example, you should pitch in July or August and give yourself a few weeks to follow up on your pitch.
When pitching via email, make sure to include the issue you’d like to be featured in (April, for example), the specific column (most magazines have monthly columns where they feature new products or new lines) and the specific product you are pitching. As with the local magazines, keep your emails short and to the point and familiarize yourself with the publication before pitching them.
4.Be on a relevant podcast
Podcasts have soared in popularity over the last year and podcasters are always looking for guests to bring on their show. As with all other media outlets, familiarize yourself with their content and the type of guests they bring on before pitching your brand or products.
The great thing about being featured in a podcast is that there is a podcast for almost every industry. Think outside the box here and pitch your business and yourself from every angle you can think of.
Some angles to consider are Shopify store owner (like this podcast), mom entrepreneur, former corporate employee to entrepreneur, six figure entrepreneur, e-commerce store owner, male/female entrepreneur, monthly subscription business model, startup entrepreneur, eco products entrepreneur, millennial, etc.
Search iTunes for specific podcasts and also check out the “viewers also subscribed to” suggestions to find even more podcasters to reach out to.
5.Pitch your brand to a trade magazine
If you sell your products at wholesale cost to other retailers you should definitely think about pitching your brand to trade magazines. While trade magazines usually have a lower circulation than national or local magazines, they are geared specifically to store owners and retail buyers in your industry.
If one of your goals is to get in front of retail buyers (without having to attend trade shows), being featured in trade magazines is definitely the way to go!
Some magazines to check out are Stationery Trends, Gift Shop Magazine, Gourmet Food Retailer, Smart Retailer, American Spa, Earnshaw’s and Giftbeat. To find more, simply search for “your industry” + “trade magazine” (for example, “apparel trade magazine” in Google and you’ll find some publications that are perfect for you.
Reaching out to trade publications is very similar to contacting Local or National ones – send your pitch via email, keep it short and be specific about which issue you’d like to be featured in.
One thing to keep in mind is to plan ahead and make publicity a part of your weekly tasks. The more you reach out, the higher your chances of being featured in magazines, blogs or podcasts.
I’d love to know what media outlets are on your DREAM list. Leave a comment below and let me know!
Andreea Ayers is an entrepreneur and the founder of www.LaunchGrowJoy.com and www.GetMediaHappy.com. She is THE go-to source for entrepreneurs with consumer products who want more press, more exposure, more success, and more sales. You can find her on Twitter at @andreeaayers