If you’re like most business owners, paying a publicist to promote your small business just isn’t feasible. There’s no budget for hiring a publicist who can’t guarantee placement. It’s like writing a big fat check for “Hope”... I hope this works.

Instead of hoping, let me share with you my best tips for getting free publicity that are proven successful.

1) Sign up for Help a Reporter Out (HARO) - www.helpareporterout.com . This free media query service is comprised of journalists looking for experts and sources who can comment on topics about which they are covering. It includes reporters, authors, and bloggers, as well as television producers looking for guests. Respond to pertinent queries in a timely, concise manner for best results.

2) Make a Media List – Pick your top 10 media outlets in which you would like to see your business covered. Although you might be thinking Today Show, CNN, or Good Morning America, don’t forget local television, regional newspapers, and trade publications. In my opinion, trade publications give you some of the biggest bang for your buck because that is your targeted audience.

3) Start Building Relationships – Find these 10 journalists on social media and start interacting with them. Don’t sell yourself but comment on their posts and share their information with your audience. They will begin to recognize you as someone who is interested in their work.

4) Share Newsworthy Story Ideas – Submit regular story ideas to these journalists. Either create your own story idea or, if you can provide expertise on something that is going on in the news currently, send that in. Keep sending in NEW newsworthy ideas every month. (Don’t send the same story idea in over and over again.) If a journalist doesn’t respond it likely means one of two things:

a) it doesn’t fit now, and/orb) they’ve filed it away for future use.

By submitting your ideas on a regular basis, the journalist will come to recognize you and your expertise. It’s important to stay front of mind with journalists.

5) Follow Editorial Calendars – All magazines have an editorial calendar which lists what the magazine will feature every month. This is designed for advertisers but also allows businesses looking to get coverage in that publication an idea of what topics they will be including every month. If your business or product fits an upcoming theme, submit your story idea to the magazine. Find editorial calendars by Googling, “magazine name” and “media kit.”

6) Use Social Media to Interact with the Media – Connect with journalists on social media. Follow them on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, and Instagram. Don’t pitch them right away but start commenting on their articles. Share their work with your audience. Give them “likes” and re-tweets. Allow them to start recognizing you.

7) Write Blog Posts – By writing content on a particular subject, you begin to establish yourself as a credible resource in your industry. The more you write, the more you will be found in Google searches. Offer to guest blog on other sites as well. When you write content for high-ranking blogs, it helps your credibility and when someone searches that topic, because the blog is high-ranking, you should appear earlier in the search results. Many journalists Google a topic online to find a preeminent expert in the field and if you come up early, they might reach out to you directly.

8) Either Apply for an Award or Give an Award – One of the easiest ways to get publicity is by winning an award. Apply for business awards. This can easily be researched via your local Chambers of Commerce or business networking groups. Winning local awards often provides local media exposure. You can also give an award. Offer a small scholarship to a local athlete or give an award to a local business. Alert the local press for the presentation. You will likely get media coverage.

These simple tips will help you gain publicity for your product, service, or brand and allow you to standout from your competition and provide you with more credibility because you’ve been in the media.

Christina Daves is the best selling author of PR for Anyone™ 100+ Affordable Ways to Easily Create Buzz for Your Business. She has appeared in over 250 media outlets including the Steve Harvey Show, Dr. Oz, local affiliates of NBC, ABC, CBS, FOX, The Washington Post, Yahoo News, Huffington Post, Entrepreneur , Forbes, Success, Inc., Bloomberg Radio, and more. Christina and her clients have generated over 7 figures in sales from free publicity. She is known as the "DIY-PR Maven" and advises and teaches business owners how to generate publicity for their business to attract new customers, gain credibility, and generate more revenue.

To learn more visit - www.PRforAnyone.com and join the community.

Author's Bio: 

Christina Daves is the best selling author of PR for Anyone™ 100+ Affordable Ways to Easily Create Buzz for Your Business. She has appeared in over 250 media outlets including the Steve Harvey Show, Dr. Oz, local affiliates of NBC, ABC, CBS, FOX, The Washington Post, Yahoo News, Huffington Post, Entrepreneur, Forbes, Success, Inc., Bloomberg Radio, and more. Christina and her clients have generated over 7 figures in sales from free publicity. She is known as the "DIY-PR Maven" and advises and teaches business owners how to generate publicity for their business to attract new customers, gain credibility, and generate more revenue.