Community Newspapers

October 31, 2018

Community newspapers offer opportunities to share the ways the U of M impacts their communities. Below are tips when pitching to community newspapers.

Coverage is local

Community newspapers provide relevant local news to their community and serve as a key information source for residents.

It is best to localize media pitches by sharing details of how your faculty’s research and expertise tie directly to the community.

Local journalists often have many beats and geographical areas to cover. Take the Anoka County Union Herald, for example. There, a reporter can cover education, local government and events in Coon Rapids, Andover, St. Francis, East Bethel, Oak Grove and Anoka.

When pitching and sending local journalists press releases, it is best practice to provide them the local connection specific to their beat or geographic areas, any multimedia opportunities, expert availability, etc. Providing relevant experts and photo and video opportunities in a timely manner builds strong relationships and helps make the U of M a resource for their future reporting.

Recognize the impact of local newspapers

Community papers continue to be a key information source. Local newspapers cover a variety of beats, such as crime, taxes, local government activities, education, area politics, art and nonprofit events, zoning information, local social services, housing, and community or neighborhood events.

Their consistent coverage allows the outlet to build credibility and trust in their readership. Local papers utilize social media and other multimedia content to reach their readership at work, at a soccer game, in their living rooms and, of course, on their door stoops. This is where you have an opportunity to help them by providing a meaningful connection between their community and the great work coming out of the University.

If you’d like to learn more about working with community newspapers, please contact Katrinna Dodge, University Public Relations, at unews@umn.edu.

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