Sometimes the news cycle catches a wave and rides it out all the way to shore, only to hop onto another one without a breather. The past few weeks has been non-stop breaking news: the Papal Visit received consistent news coverage; John Boehner announced that he was stepping down; and Hurricane Joaquin drove everyone crazy on whether or not it will make landfall in the US. It feels like the news stations have been in a frenzy jumping from one topic to another without giving any of us a break.
When everyone’s excitedly obsessing over the same thing it can certainly feel like no one’s listening to what you have to say. What can you do to make people pay attention to you when everyone’s eyes and ears are glued to a forecast map of a category 4 hurricane?
Ride the wave: Last year when Dallas had a case of Ebola, we were working with a book on conspiracy theories. So we pitched media about Ebola conspiracy theories and the author was interviewed for an article in Dallas Morning News. Instead of fighting against the current, we went with it and it brought us some great coverage.
Join the conversation: If you have a blog and have an opinion on a current event, why not write about it? Post to social media accounts, send to other blogs or websites, and use hashtags to gain more exposure. Were you there in Philly when the #Pope visited? Do you think Hurricane #Joaquin will be the next Superstorm Sandy? You never know who might agree and retweet or use what you have to say.
Prepare to launch: There’s no point stressing over the fact that no one is getting back to you. Relax a bit and prepare for the next week, so that you’re ready to go once the roar dies down and media outlets are in need of something else to talk about. Remember, the news cycle moves fast: one week we’re panicking about Ebola and rushing to the pharmacy for Emergen-C and surgeon masks, the next we’re forgetting our hand sanitizer at home.
Even though it may feel like the world has stopped when a hurricane and nor’easter are making headlines, there’s always an incentive to keep going. You just have to look for it.