Do you own a company or operate as a freelancer? Then you have a better idea of what positive press attention can do for your business. Good press will drive new customers to a business, highlight your brand, and generate new leads. It also usually leads to more coverage, in my experience.
Determine which journalists are responsible for the articles in which you want to be featured. Make sure you do your homework and read their articles. Contact them and ask them questions about the fields in which they are qualified. Keep an eye on their social media accounts and share their content on social media. To put it another way, get to know them as well as you can without actually meeting them. Build a small database with brief information about each journalist and their publication so you know who to contact and how to contact them. My existing database of publishers contains over 55 journalists and is regularly updated.
You should not jump right into a pitch if the opportunity arises. I've had success by seeking advice (preferably in person)and deferring my pitch to later down the road. Consider it like cashing in a token; once redeemed, there is no going back. Allow the journalist to notice your support for their published work before attempting to gain free publicity through their platform. To put it another way, don't make it obvious that you're trying to "social climb."
I understand that the purpose of this article is to show you how to get free press coverage, but you must be prepared to "put your money where your mouth is". This implies that your brand, business, or service must be relevant and interesting. I also found it's very important that those who read your publications should be influenced by your lifestyle. Once you feel ready to tell your wonderful story to the journalist or publication, use the token I mentioned earlier at the right opportunity and in the most casual way possible. (VERY IMPORTANT) Don't frighten the journalist away with an obvious "I used you" remark during your conversation.