Taking Your Journal’s Content Beyond the Trades

Medical journals not only keep doctors abreast of the latest data, they can also drive media coverage in health and medical trade publications. However, what many organizations that publish a journal don’t realize, is that they could easily reframe their journal content to generate national media and boost the credibility of their field to mainstream audiences, such as patients, policymakers and more.

If your organization publishes a journal, keep reading below for a checklist of how to start making national news out of your data:

◊ Identify a Newsworthy Study: Review your table of contents with an eye to what will be of interest for national media outlets. Think about the data in ways that would appeal to media. It’s similar to establishing media angles for any other news.

When we review studies, we look for certain aspects like the population size, specific demographics analyzed (male vs. female), lifestyle factors (smoking, obesity, geographic), novel technologies and procedures, first in human results and more.

Our main goal is to find something unique about the study to create a hook that we can use to secure interest.

◊ Make it Easily Digestible: Translating data to be consumer-friendly is a key part of journal promotion and can be challenging. Clinical documents are written for doctors and other medical professionals, and needs to be translated into something that is relatable, such as making a comparison, for a consumer audience.

One way we approach data simplification and the patient care impact is to interview the lead author of the study. This allows us to ask specific questions about the research, understand the broader impact of the data and determine how the data could impact awareness and behavior.

For example, if a study discusses specific populations like women or Hispanics or both, think how this type of data breakdown could be interesting for that audience and the media that reach them.

◊ Develop Assets to Showcase Study: Consider drafting a press release showcasing the research. When developing a press release, write the release as if you’re writing a news article. Start with the unique piece of news for this study to secure interest right away. Remember to include general background information about your journal and organization to provide context for reporters about your organization’s expertise.

Also, consider developing a video interview with the lead author, an infographic or other types of visuals to include with the press release and to use across all promotion channels.

◊ Identify Media of Interest: This step is vital for getting the information you have to the right audience. Don’t overlook target trade publications as they will reach other professionals in the industry and impact those experts, and may also lead to national coverage.

Additionally, consider the way you broke down the data and who else will get the value from it. Explore the various angles within the study and match your targets to the angles.

Does your study appeal to women? Include national media and consumer media like women’s magazines/blogs. There are a number of mainstream media outlets who reach that audience and it’s your job to find them.

◊ Promote the Study: Timing is key when promoting journal studies. Outreach should be conducted leading up to the day the study officially publishes, whether that is online or in print edition.

Treat journal studies like breaking news. The further ahead you can share the news with media contacts, the better.

Additionally, journal data provides an opportunity for you to build relationships with national media so that they use your experts for future stories. Additionally, you can use this time to gain intel on new stories they are working on that your organization and spokesperson could potentially provide expertise.

Utilize the most newsworthy assets and then put a strategy in place to push these assets out to the media consistently. With these strategies, your association will begin to stand out among the clutter and competition, and enjoy the coverage it deserves.