This month's tip comes from Chris Huot, Marketing & Events Specialist for the Bakersfield CVB.   Chris Huot_2 

Simplify your media relations tasks in CRM 3.0 in two ways

1. Create categories for media contacts.  By doing this, you can assign each contact a category and use this category to search for and send e-mails via the CRM to a specific type of media. Let's say your PR department wants to send a news release out to Tourism/Leisure media contacts only. If all of your Tourism/Leisure contacts are assigned to the category ‘Tourism/Leisure' then you can create and save a search to display the Tourism/Leisure contacts only. Other common types of categories for contacts can include: Local Media, Sports (both local and trade), Board of Directors, Meeting/Convention Media and niche media (foodies, wine, etc).

I prefer to keep as much data and communications flowing through the CRM - thus I try to send all my news releases via the CRM using saved searches. This way I can really target my audience to the media contacts that will be the most receptive of the news release content. I don't want to send my tourism news release to my meeting media contacts - or vice versa. By creating categories and corresponding saved searches I increase the likelihood of my release being picked up by a media outlet.

To create categories go to the Media/PR section of your CRM > Admin > Dropdowns > Media Categories > Add New Categories. Once you've added all the categories you want, go back and assign each media contact to a category. Then create a saved search to filter out each category (or multiple categories) for future use.

2. Create a Media Release Template.  One of the best ways to create brand consistency (and make sending a news release easier) is to have Simpleview create a media release template that can be selected and inserted into the HTML body of a CRM e-mail. The template I currently use includes our full color logo on the left side and my contact information on the right side (in line with each other). This is much like a header in Word. The advantage with creating a template is over time media members get used to seeing your logo and recognize your contact information. As always, the body of your news release must contain newsworthy information, but a professional and consistent template always creates a good first impression.