How To Get Your Products Into Christmas Gift Guides
The biggest shopping season of the year is closer than you think. Long lead publications’ Christmas Gift Guides are compiled 3 to 6 months before they are published - sometimes even longer, as shopping pages are transformed from two page features to ten pages worth of gifts; valuable space to inspire your customer’s Christmas wish lists. Many shoppers turn to gift guides for ideas for even the most difficult of recipients – who knows what to buy your dad’s brother’s wife for Christmas anyway? As with any good press, it can also increase your credibility and boost awareness of your brand among your target customers. You’ll want to make the most of them – so here are our top tips for maximising press throughout the biggest shopping season of the year.
1. Timing is everything
A lot of the time, getting press has a lot to do with luck – frustrating, we know. This is especially true for seasonal features. But let us tell you that you can increase your chances of being called in for a feature simply by contacting editors at the right time.
We’re not joking when we’re saying ‘Christmas in July’, as it’s indeed the time to start thinking about the holiday season if you want to maximise your chances of press coverage. Different types of magazines start getting their seasonal features together at different times, but generally speaking, monthly magazines start compiling their features anywhere between three and six months in advance, while weekly and only publication have much shorter lead times. But we’re here to help – We’ve compiled a long list of publications compiling gift guides this year, including their opening dates and submission deadlines.
2. Do your research
Yes, editors will be able to tell if you’ve never picked up a copy of the publication you’re pitching to. So, don’t underestimate the power of doing your research.
Start by making a list of publications you want to target. Important here is not to forget to choose publications that match your target audience and who you’re trying to attract as a customer.
Next, find out as much as you can about the publications you want your brand to be featured in. Get to know which editor compiles the Christmas feature and use social media to your benefit by following and engaging with them. Find out what they’re interested in and what theme they are going for. Reading the magazines will allow you to get to grips with what the editors are expecting in your pitch, and knowing this will give you a competitive advantage when you get in touch, show them that you have done your homework. No amount of research is ever too much.
3. Have your imagery ready
A must before even starting to reach out to the press is getting your assets ready. Your imagery will be your most important asset. First impressions count, so it’s important to get theses right before you contact anyone. It's essential to get this right, so we always recommend hiring a professional. High quality imagery is always an investment when it comes to press coverage.
You will need both lifestyle and cut-out imagery. Trust us when we say an editor will only consider your product for a shopping page, if you can provide them with high resolution, clean cut-out shots. Your lifestyle imagery should be beautifully styled and well considered for your target audience.
Cut-out images have a white background and they must be high resolution (330 pixels per inch or above). These images will be printed in the magazine itself (no pressure).
4. Persistence is the key
Editors are busy people with a full inbox and generally speaking they’ll only get back to you if they need something from you at that particular moment. Sometimes they won’t respond at all and might just pull a photo directly from your website to use for their story. It’s the unpredictable (and thrilling) nature of press. Send a short follow up email a week or so after your first just to check it didn’t get lost in their inbox. Rome wasn’t built in a day. The same goes for getting your products noticed by the press.
Want to get your brand featured in the Christmas Gift Guides? Last year our brands graced the pages of The Telegraph, Stylist, Evening Standard, Elle and many more. The PR Dispatch Christmas Gift Guide gives you everything you to need to pitch your product to Christmas press and you'll have access to over 85 gift guides from July until December. There's only 100 memberships available this year so make sure you sign up now to secure yours and put your best foot forward with Christmas press.