How to Market a New Idea on The Today Show

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Want a million dollars of publicity for your great new book, product or idea without spending a million dollars? If you can get your idea on theToday show, you'll reach an audience of almost 6 million viewers and instantly obtain priceless national exposure.

Steps to Success

  • Determine the news angle for your product, book or idea. Today Show producers are interested in highlighting stories that are important to the public and timely in nature. "Hook" your idea to something of intense current interest. A newly published book on Barrack Obama was timely when he was a new figure bursting forth on the political scene. Your talking reindeer toy might work perfectly for a Christmas gift round-up.

  • Be ready to go. Is your idea not only timely, but unique, something you can demonstrate or talk about, and actually available to the public? Don't waste time getting people excited about your reverse snowboard if it hasn't been manufactured and isn't in any stores.

  • Practice your pitch by getting tv exposure in local media markets. Develop a media list of newspaper, magazine and TV contacts by consulting a media directory at the local library. Send out, or have your PR professional contact, the various editors and producers with a news release about your product that gives a quick overview of your idea, along with photos and other details. List yourself at HARO ("Help a Reporter Out") as a media expert or source.

  • Hire a Public Relations expert. Having an agent who knows the ins and outs of dealing with the media will greatly increase the possibity of landing a spot on a national show with the scope of Today. Look for an agent or a firm that has already successfully placed clients on the Today Show or other major news shows. The Council of Public Relatiions Firms can provide guidance and references.

  • Work with your PR professional to polish your pitch and create a winning press kit consisting of the news articles and TV spots you've already garnered. Listen to your agent's advice and allow him to do his job. Your PR firm will submit your idea, book or product along with your press kit and apply appropriate persuasion to their Today Show contact.

Tips & Warnings

  • A PR agent is the way to go if you really are serious about getting your idea on Today. However, if you're short of cash and long on hope, send your exciting, timely idea directly to Noah Kotch, Senior Producer, Today, 379E-1, 30 Rockefeller Plaza, New York, NY 10112.

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