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Media Preview 101

Event Tips >

Media Preview 101

If you are producing a visual event, such as a festival, a class where you are creating something unusual, or a staged event with captivating costumes, consider holding a media preview.

The purpose of a media preview is to get publicity and public awarenessbefore your event begins. If the media is interested in your event but has to wait until your show starts to write the story, then press attention will come only after your event is over – and that won’t help you sell any tickets. It takes effort to put a media event together, but getting reviews and exposure in the press can help draw a big crowd, making it well worth your time!

Step 1: What is the most visual piece of your event?
Figuring out the key visual elements of your show and deciding who you want interviewed as part of the news story are what you should focus on. If you are having an old-time car rally, pull a couple of the most interesting looking cars for the press. What can the reporter experience as part of the story? Can they ride in a vehicle, play the instrument or participate in any other way? The more interactive the media preview, the more reporters you will attract and the more interesting the story will be.

Step 2: Plan the date and time for your media preview at the easiest time for the media to cover it. 
This means weekdays with a start time between 10:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. If your press event has to be at night, realize that you may have less press in attendance. Less press is better than no press, however it is a resource that you should maximize as much as possible.

Step 3: Invite the media sooner rather than later.
Give the press a notice of 4 to 6 weeks minimum, if possible. You can email invitations, but if you really want to receive press attention, create and send a physical piece of mail that is not flat, helping it stand out from the rest of their mail.

Step 4: Have everything ready in advance.
Make sure you have everything set up before the press arrives. Get your visuals in place. This includes your visual elements, at least one spokesperson for reporters to speak with, and your other “enthusiasts” and/or event attendees who will rave about the show. They will do the talking for you. Your fan club or mailing list would be a great source for your “enthusiasts.”

Step 5: At the event, treat the press like royalty.
Give them a freebie, some refreshments if possible, and a fact sheet on your event that includes the key marketing points that you’d like them to include in their stories. Don’t forget to include your business card so, if needed, they can ask questions later. Make sure each media representative gets an equal opportunity for the interviews and visuals he/she needs at the event.

If you could use more help or ideas while planning your media preview, don’t hesitate to call and/or write us! We are at your service or (800) 838-3006 (Option 5).

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