Public Relations

PR Firms’ Secret Weapon: Sourcing Experts for Journalists to Build Trust

Public relations services for less than a dollar? Whatever keeps the journalists coming back.

Public relations is as much about being a trusted and reliable resource for writers as it is about getting our clients mentioned in the press. So when the New York Times calls asking if you have anyone who could talk about “bleisure travel,” you find someone that can talk about bleisure travel.

One of the most valuable services Tampa Bay PR firms provide is acting as a trusted resource for journalists, helping them source experts for stories even when those sources aren’t paying clients. This behind-the-scenes work is crucial for building and maintaining strong relationships with media contacts.

For instance, in this Times business story*, Amy Zipkin discusses the growing trend of “bleisure travel,” where employees combine business trips with leisure activities. This creates a gray area for companies who are unsure of their legal responsibility to protect employees during the leisure portion of the trip. Employees, meanwhile, may be surprised to learn that company coverage may not extend beyond business days. The article explores how companies grapple with these issues and suggests some best practices for employers and employees. We’re happy our Florida public relations team was able to connect her with a great source who not only made the lede but was featured throughout the story.

By going above and beyond to help journalists source experts, even when there’s no immediate benefit to our own clients, we demonstrate our value as media partners. This builds goodwill and strengthens relationships, making reporters more likely to turn to us when they need sources or story ideas in the future. For Florida PR firms, being seen as a reliable resource that can deliver quality sources quickly is invaluable. It positions them as true media allies rather than just promoters pushing their own agenda. Over time, this approach leads to more organic coverage opportunities for clients.

Ultimately, the most successful PR strategies take a long-term view focused on relationship building. By consistently helping reporters do their jobs more effectively – whether that means finding sources, providing background information, or offering unique story angles – PR firms cement their status as indispensable partners to the media. This pays dividends in terms of increased coverage, stronger journalist relationships, and an enhanced reputation within the industry.

*Read the complete article at the New York Times. Keep in mind a subscription is required.