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Tech PR Strategies – How Contributed Stories Help Reinforce Your Thought Leadership

One of the areas I try to focus on with technology clients is to work a company’s Chief Technical Officer to help set the tone and being a credible voice for the company’s thought leadership.


Take a clue from client, Dan Cornell, who is the primary author of the Denim Group’s blog, is active on Twitter and authors contributed articles such as this one in Securities Technology Monitor.

Here’s some helpful tips to follow:

1.  Realize your company’s CTO is busy, so start with some realistic goals for contributed stories.  Depending on your market space, aiming for two per year or once per quarter might be a great place to start. 

2.  Think about vertical market media and how your technology, platform, or service  helps solve problems or disrupt markets where you are impacting.

3.  Be helpful.  Be informative.  But don’t sell.  You’re being given a precious piece of real estate, on a publication’s site or in their physical publication.  Respect it as such, offering helpful, practical and actionable insights that demonstrate your expertise.

4.  Build extended content from your contributed article.  Have links to related work you have done.  If you are recommending an inventory of actionable items, develop a worksheet the reader can download and take action.

5.  Embed video.  You don’t need high end production values.  A Kodak Zi-8 is an ideal platform, and what I use on many of my own at my YouTube channel.  Your iPhone – or any current smartphone also produces great quality videos as well. 

6.  Don’t just publish.  Engage.  As your readers for feedback.  Post your article on your social profiles and make sure your sales and business development teams do likewise.

7.  When you are pitching your story idea, look into the publication’s editorial calendar, giving you a road map of what the publication is going to be covering in the year to come.

8.   Provide an abstract as a baseline for the contributed article.  Generally a paragraph or two will more than suffice – outlining what the author intends to write about, why it’s timely and relevant to the readership of the publication.

9.   Make it exclusive.  While implied, make sure the editor you are working with know that this is an original body of work and that it won’t appear verbatim in another publication.

10.  Buy article reprint rights.  Here’s an example from Ziff-Davis.  Even in this digital world, reprints make great sales tools for your business development team.  Make sure you also adhere to linking rights.  Your milage will vary from publisher to publisher to best to inquire before you start promoting your work.

Have you had success with contributed articles?  Chime in and share your story.

Photo shot with a wide angle lens somewhere in Iceland by Alan Weinkrantz – feel free to share with appropriate credits.

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