Many companies think they need to avoid cookie-cutter style public relations strategies. I’ve even been told by clients that one of the things they like most about us is that we don’t do cookie-cutter campaigns.

This might surprise you, but I love cookie cutters and we use them all the time.  Cookie cutters give media stories structure and shape, making it easier for reporters to share your story.

It’s not the cookie cutter that makes your company stand out.   It’s the cookie’s ingredients or the frosting on top of the cookie which make media opportunities unique and memorable.

Let me share a couple examples.

Planning a ribbon cutting event for a new store location is easiest when it follows a cookie-cutter format.  The structure ensures consistency for the brand, and makes it easier for staff from a planning standpoint.  Think of the personalization for the event as the cookie’s frosting.  Partnering on the event with the local chamber of commerce and inviting local dignitaries are what make the event more memorable and newsworthy.

Another example would be if your company hosts special event or training session where it flies in winners, resellers or employees from different parts of the country.  Create a template, or cookie-cutter style announcement about the event.   Take a picture of each attendee standing with the President of the company.  In the background of the photo have a logo or some local imagery (an example of local imagery would be the HQ building for the company or if the event is in Arizona do it outside with cactus or other local images in the background).   Send that photo to the hometown newspapers of each attendee stating that: employee X of CITY attended a special meeting in Scottsdale, Arizona where they met with the company President.

You can send that same cookie-cutter style announcement to 100 different small town newspapers and each one would have a chance of being picked up as a news story.  Local media won’t care or realize that the cookie-cutter was used 100 times. They only notice the ingredients and frosting— someone from their hometown earned a free trip out of town and received special training. Plus it’s a lot easier than trying to write 100 unique news releases!

The fact is, cookie cutters work.  And I’m more than happy to use them if they get my clients positive media attention that helps them achieve their goals.

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