The news knows no day off.
Fortunately, public relations professionals often have the luxury of taking weekends (most of the time), but sometimes working the weekend can make the difference in getting your client covered.
When it comes to local media, the weekend staff at news stations and papers are the equivalents of nocturnal animals, rarely seen or recognized but magnificent creatures starved for content.
Here are a few things to keep in mind when working weekends:
Make sure you know the weekend staff.
TV weekend producers are different than the weekday staff. Develop relationships with them and know when they come in (usually on Fridays). This way you aren’t pitching the weekday assignment editor with weekend content, and the weekend producers can start their “work week” with stories.
Know that weekends are either slammed or slow.
When big news breaks on Saturday or Sunday, the weekend reporting staff is often stretched to its limits. Other times, when news is slow, it gives new meaning to “lazy Sunday.” More often than not, the weekend reporters have more time and fewer resources and will be grateful for the tips. These slow news days on the weekend are a great opportunity to get coverage for a smaller event or story for your client.
Plan ahead: Anticipate the news for the weekend.
If President Obama is showing up in your town, a story will be almost impossible to orchestrate the day of and the two days surrounding his visit. Newspaper weekend reporters tend to rotate and can be tricky to keep track of, but if you know who is working on that weekends issue you can pitch them ahead of time.
Get a jump on the traditional workweek.
Be ahead of the game and take the time on a Sunday to pitch your stories for the upcoming week, instead of sending them out on Friday at 4:55 p.m. They will be the first thing reporters see in their crowded inboxes come Monday morning.
Bridget Veltri is a junior account executive at The Abbi Agency. A version of this story first appeared on The Abbi Agency Blog. Follow The Abbi Agency on Twitter @TheAbbiAgency. Follow the author on Twitter @BVeltri.