Is your news newsworthy?

You’ve got news and you think it’s important. Now you’re ready to share it with the world in all of its glory.

Or so you think.

Getting your story in the news can be tricky. What’s worth a read to you may not be to others. If you’re having trouble getting the media to accept your submissions and pitches, it may be time for some honest self-reflection. Here are some tips to help you determine if your news is newsworthy and what to do if it’s not.


Sometimes it’s hard to separate emotions when you’re excited about information you want to share, but it’s vital to remember that whatever you want to talk about has to be relevant to the public at large, or at least your target audience. Make sure you clearly spell out what effect your news will have on a publication’s readers and explain what impact your story will have.


Not just to readers, but to reporters. Compelling writing and attention-grabbing headlines are not the only way into a publication.

Be sure to do your research and become familiar with the reporters you are pitching. What topics do they cover?  What are their interests? (Yes, this may mean a little social stalking, but consider it research.) Do you have anything in common? If you’d like to see your story in the news, you’ll need to get the thumbs up from them first, and that often starts with simply getting to know them better.


As the old saying goes, timing really is everything. You need to get the word out ahead of the crowd in order to be seen as an essential news resource. News, by definition, is new. If you’re delivering outdated content that’s already been addressed, it’s old news, and it won’t likely be considered worthy of attention.

Be sure to plan ahead. If you anticipate that your company or product will be seeing some change worth talking about, start thinking about media relations ahead of time. Ask yourself:

  1. Who will I want to know about this?
  2. What do I want them to know?
  3. Why do I want them to know it?
  4. What is the geography of the people this news will affect?

Start looking into which publications you hope to see your news in. This will give you time to research reporters and learn who cares about your topic and who doesn’t.

Set expectations

If your expectation is to be on the cover of next week’s issue of Time, your bar may be set too high. Even aiming to get a feature story in the local paper could be too high of an expectation. Your story might not be strong enough to stand on its own and may not always make the cut. However, that doesn’t mean it can’t still be shared.

Perhaps your story is better suited as part of a larger story that may even include some of your competitors. Or, it could be worth a mention on social media. Which influencers (read: How to develop an influencer campaign and reach new qualified audiences) can help share your post?

Sometimes news just needs a little help, even an outsider’s perspective. Let us know how we can help you figure out your best approach.

Amanda Colocho

Amanda joined Hodges in 2015 after earning her undergraduate degree in mass communications and public relations from VCU. Since then, she’s been flexing her media relations, content strategy and social media muscles on accounts like Virginia Distillery Company, Motorcycle Law Group, Hilldrup, Kroger, Virginia Outdoors Foundation and Swedish Match’s Umgås Magazine.

Read more by Amanda

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Sign up to receive our blog posts by email