, (PressExposure) June 22, 2006 -- On Monday, the UK's news media feverishly announced that their flagship music programme, TOP OF THE POPS, was to be scrapped. It was front page stories on many newspapers, featured in television and radio news and was the subject of a phone-in on BBC Radio Five Live.
In it's 42 year history TOTP, as it is known, has faced competition from new media, particularly on-line sources of music and CD's. In recent years it had been moved from its traditional slot on a Thursday night to Sunday evening - a questionable decision by the BBC but they are a power unto themselves.
John Hicks of Headline Promotions, Press & PR remembered that his clients, MODERN ROMANCE, had appeared on TOTP in the 80's and so rang their lead singer, Andy Kyriacou, for his thoughts.
He was sad at the demise of the programme. It had always been his dream to appear on the programme and so, when he and the band went on to promote their then new release 'Everybody Salsa', it was the ambition of a lifetime. Of course, the band went on to great things right across the globe but the euphoria of that first appearance on TOTP remains with him today.
This joy was not diminished when Andy and the band were featured in a reminiscent TOTP2 special many years later!
On Monday afternoon, Andy jotted down a few thoughts and e-mailed them to John. From this he created a press release which, after Andy had quickly signed it off, he distributed to media contacts and across the Internet. John also used that to post responses on web forums covering the topic.
That afternoon, Modern Romance had a brief mention on BBC Radio Five Live's popular drive time show.
By 10am Tuesday morning, a BBC journalist was on the phone. Because of the urgent time scale, John arranged for him to speak to Andy direct on the telephone. Within hours, it had full page coverage on the BBC website which has hits in the hundreds of thousands from around the world! Not only did it feature Andy's story but there was a link to the Modern Romance website!
As John said: "It's results like this that make you go home after a long day on the road, or in the office, with a huge smile!"
"So, what are the two lessons from the last two days? Firstly, scour the newspapers and actively listen to the radio for stories where your clients can link in."
"Even if you are not a PR consultant but are in business, learn this lesson too! As a marketing and promotions manager in the leisure industry, I too scoured the newspapers. Maybe there was a charity being established, for whom I could organise a fundraising event, or a business celebrating a success, for whom I could organise an event for customers and/or staff. I never found a newspaper where there wasn't at least one business opportunity for me!"
"Once you spot a story, don't delay - get on the phone to your client and media contacts. Whilst you are having a coffee, your competition are on the case on behalf of their clients. When I first heard the story, I was driving on the motorway so I pulled into the first service station I could find and started phoning!" added John.