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How to Build Relationships with the Media

Talking to reporters makes good business sense. Aileen Pincus offers some tips on how to become a source for stories that may help build your brand

These days, business requires sophisticated communication with clients and customers. That takes the artful use of essential promotion tools: marketing, public relations, and advertising. Almost all business executives would agree that promoting your business is a smart idea, but few understand the value in a free communication tool that is often much more powerful: the news media.

The media require sources in order to do their job. Being an expert source for reporters benefits you by giving you increased visibility and credibility, along with providing a platform for your ideas. When you're quoted as a leading authority about an idea, trend, product, or service, your knowledge is on display. That speaks far more powerfully about your reputation in your field than any paid promotional pitch. Being quoted in the media also opens up new avenues of reaching your target audiences and allows you to communicate with them in a different way.