In this video, I share a strategy that we’ve used to get coverage on Techcrunch, iMore, Adweek, BGR and other major publications.

This video is part of my Udemy course, Growth Hacker’s Guide to PR & Media Coverage. You can save 90% off this course and get it for just $10 (reg. $97).

Transcript:

First one, exclusive. Number one is the exclusive. This is one of the best ways. If there is a big publication that you are dying to get on, like TechCrunch or VentureBeat or Lifehacker – whatever it may be, give them the exclusive on your launch or whatever your release is going to be. And it’s an easy way, that’s how I first got on, when I was in corporate life, that’s how I was able to get on TechCrunch. And then I even got on iMore using this strategy.

Here’s an example of an exclusive that I gave, and this is AppAdvice. And AppAdvice does these posts where It’s Today’s Apps Gone Free and I had oSnap on there. And oSnap, I was charging 1.99 at the time and I dropped it and I gave AppAdvice an exclusive on that, and it drove tons of downloads, like 28,000 downloads I believe over a span of two days. And it was amazing, amazing traction to see. And when I did this other campaign, the same campaign where I went free and I didn’t tell anybody, it got hundreds of downloads.

So it was a great comparison and the key lesson was if you’re going to do these types of campaigns where you go free, because I’ve heard some of my past guests say, “Hey, you go free, you get tons of downloads.” You have to tell other people. You can’t just go free and hope that somebody picks it up. So you have to tell other people, and when you give people an exclusive like I gaveAppAdvice for this, they are more likely to cover you. And so I want to cover a couple of different exclusives that you can give.

So there are two types of exclusives, and both have worked well for me. So you can give exclusive to the blog. So let’s say you are emailing iMore, and I use iMore as an example because this is what worked for me. And I wasn’t trying to pitch any type of blogger; I was just trying to pitch them, iMore, the publication. So it was tips@imore.com that was the email address I believe. And I just said, “Hey, exclusive to iMore, we have a new product update. It is going live in a few days.” And this was for a client of mine and that worked really well for us, and they featured us in a round up post. It was new and updated apps, so we were part of maybe 10 other apps in that post, but hey, now we are on iMore, and we can use that. And what I want to talk about later on is the fact that you can leverage some of these. So even if you are on a round up post, the fact that you’ve been on iMore, you can leverage that to get even more press. I’ll talk about that in a later module.

But the second exclusive that you can do is to the actual blogger, you can say “Exclusive to Steve”. And this is what I did when I got on TechCrunch. I gave the exclusive – here it is, I gave the exclusive to Anthony Ha. And so, in the subject line, you could see in my subject line templates that I said “Exclusive to Ha” in the subject line and I said, “Smartshoot…” I made my pitch there. So I said, “Hey Anthony, this new feature is coming out.” And then he said, “Great, just give me a week before it comes out.” And then he will write about it. And so this is what happened, you give them an exclusive. And a ninja tip that you can use, is if you are going to use this strategy, like leave it up to them.

The best day to actually email some of these tech blogs is on a Thursday or Friday, because the big companies are making their news in the beginning of the week, and so you have leverage towards the end of the week to do it. And so you can email them and say “Look, hey you know we can do this either Thursday or Friday. You let me know what works best for your timeline. And give them the option to pick what day works for them. So Thursday maybe a big news day for them that they are already working on a few other articles, then maybe Friday would be the best day. And this is something that happened with Antony too. I think we were launching on a Wednesday and he’s like, “Hey, I might not get to this.” But he got to this like Wednesday night or something like that. So if you leave it up to them and say, “Look, we can go either live on Thursday or Friday, just let me know.”

Then they are more likely to write about you as well. So the two ninja tips I just gave you were email them on a Thursday or Friday – that’s Pacific time, sort of in the like early mornings, so around 11 to 12 o’clock because the early morning news has died down now. And then launching on a Thursday and Friday is going to give you a little bit more advantage especially when you are reaching out to the tech community. And if you give them the option to actually pick the time they want to write about you, that’s even better. But you have to follow up early, don’t just wait for the day before and say, “Hey, you can write this on Thursday or Friday.” Just give it to them early, I would say a week before is a probably good time frame, say “Hey look, we’re going live and we can either go live on Thursday or Friday. You pick, you tell us which one you prefer and we will make it work.” And when you do this exclusive, feel free to follow up one time, and say, “Hey look, I just want to make sure if you want to this exclusive or not. If not, then I’m going to go on to another publication.” And so that usually gets them to either say yes or no, and if they still don’t respond, what you can do is give the other site the exclusive. Obviously, don’t tell the other site that they are second choice, but you can then go to the other site and say, “Look, hey I want to give you an exclusive.” And so that’s why I always say start early. So if you can even start like 10 days before, then you can start on the 10th day before you are about to launch, give TechCrunch an exclusive. TechCrunch for me, follow up the day after, a couple days after that. If they don’t bite, then the day after that you give like VentureBeat an exclusive and you try to follow up that way. And then I’ve even done things where we’ll push the launch date back because no one bit, and then work that same angle. If it doesn’t work, I would say don’t keep pushing it back because sometimes it’s just – they’re not going to cover you, like they are just not interested, they don’t find the product interesting enough. Just go ahead and launch and I will share with you another strategy that you can use that’s called the bottom-up strategy.

Steve Young

Founder at AppMasters
I started building apps in 2011 and my first app hit #8 under educational games. I started making a few hundred dollars a month, but had no idea what I was doing. Then in 2013 I decided to start a podcast so I could pick the brains of app creators that I admired including the co-founder of Shazam, Tapbots, Crossy Road, etc and that changed everything.

Now I run an app marketing agency where we’ve helped 8 clients get featured by Apple, 5X downloads with ASO, and get coverage on Techcrunch, Mashable, Venture Beat and other major publications. I also write about apps on The Next Web, Entrepreneur.com, and on my blog AppMasters.co.