Helpful Hints for Hosting a Successful Press Trip

There are many reasons you might decide to host a press trip but it’s important to define your goals upfront and make sure you communicate them to all of your potential guests from the start.

There are two common types of press trips: those that generate press coverage and/or social media content and those that are more for relationship-building purposes with key editors, influencers or bloggers, like a media dinner.

Choose your location

Once you define your objectives, choose a location and activities that help tell your client or brand’s story. Maybe it’s a trip to the place that inspired your client’s latest collection or where your client’s business or brand was originally founded.

Wherever you go, the location should help tell the brand story. You may also try and partner with a hotel or resort to help cover the costs of the press trip.  If you do form a partnership with a hotel, just be aware they will have additional expectations for your guests; most likely be social media content about their property. Again, make sure you communicate these requests to all guests upfront and be realistic about what you promise to a potential partner. Complimentary hotel rooms come with a different kind of cost.

Define the news

If you’re planning a press trip with the goal of generating media coverage, make sure there’s actual news being announced on your trip. Or create a newsworthy experience that illustrates the brand story.  Make sure you and your client have realistic expectations about how newsworthy the story is, and the amount of coverage it can be expected to generate.

Complimentary hotel rooms come with a different kind of cost.

If you are requesting press coverage, blog posts and/or social media content creation from your guests, it’s important to outline your requests in your initial invitation. Being transparent about your expectations will allow both your client and guests to get the most out of your press trip.

Set very clear expectations

Once you’ve defined your objectives and secured your guests, provide all attendees with an agenda ahead of time. Provide a second copy for each guest when they check into their hotel. For an instantly Instagrammable moment, organize welcome packages and/or a room drop with gifts from your client for each guest.  If you’re hoping to generate social media engagement surrounding your trip, it’s a great practice to WiFi network information for all locations on the agenda, as well as all relevant handles and hashtags.

Overdeliver

During the trip, make sure to deliver on any interviews you promised your guests. If you are scheduling interviews with a celebrity, designer and/or spokesperson for your client or brand, then make sure you follow through. Planned surprises that wow and delight your guests is another great way to keep the positive vibes and brand buzz going.

After the press trip, make sure that all of your guests have all of the press materials and assets they need to share the experience with their readers and followers. Ask for feedback on the experience so you can share insights with your client. As the coverage starts to roll in, ensure that you are helping to promote and cross post coverage to show your appreciation and support.

About This Author

Melissa Pastore is a seasoned PR and communications professional, with a decade of experience working with global fashion and accessories brands including Swarovski and LACOSTE. She currently holds the role of Public Relations Manager at LACOSTE, where she is responsible for developing and executing a U.S. press strategy for the brand. Melissa holds a B.A. in broadcast journalism and policy studies from Syracuse University, where she was dually enrolled in the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications and the Maxwell School.