Chapter six in the text book Public Relation Writing and Media Techniques, discusses the importance of fact sheets, media kits, advisories, and pitches. In the text it explains what each element is. A fact sheet is usually a one page background sheet about an event, product, or even the organization. It often is used with a media kit or news release. The way fact sheets are written are usually in a list of bullet points or outline form so the reporter can use it to quick reference when writing a story. There are fact sheets used for events, corporate profiles, summary of news releases or FAQ sheets. Media advisories are often called media alerts. They tell assignment editors about upcoming events. The format for these is usually short bulleted items brief paragraphs, outline a story idea, contain some of the 5 W’s and H, and include contact info. These usually let people know the time and location of scheduled news conference, let the reporters and editors know about the interview opportunity, or alert the press to a local angle as part of a national story. Media Kits which are also called Press Kits are prepared for major events. One of these events could be a new product launch. The purpose is to give editors and reporters a variety of info and resources so it will be easier for the reporter to write about the topic.
These are all important tools to have a public relations practitioner. I think that just becoming familiar with the types of tools you can use, what they are used for, and the format of the tools is extremely important for us to learn as aspiring PR professionals. These tools can be what makes you or breaks you as a PR practitioner. I think that being able to write a good news release and being able to successfully add these elements will make a PR practitioner make it. The book also gave great tips and ideas for electronic media kits. They are more versatile than traditional print kits because they can include multiple pieces of information in a variety of formats. These formats can include text, photos, videos, animation, etc. It gives the journalist a lot more flexibility and options rather than the traditional kit. Also Electronic Media Kits will reach more audiences than traditional media kits. And Electronic Media Kits are a lot less expensive than print media kits.
It is amazing how with the changing technology our businesses have changed. PR practitioners rely so much on computers and the internet so it is extremely important that they are comfortable with technology and media. I think that makes my generation have a huge advantage over older ones. We have grown up with this technology and it is a lot easier for us to be able to use it rather than older people become familiar with it. I think Electronic media kits are just the beginning and I am excited to see where technology takes us next.