National TV Exposure: A Golden Goose or a Wild Goose Chase?

In public relations, the allure of national television exposure is often perceived as the golden goose, laying eggs of boundless opportunities for brands’ awareness. The wide reach and prestige associated with national TV could potentially propel a brand into the highest limelight, granting them a chance to share their story with millions. However, the reality of this allure is much more nuanced, and in many instances, chasing this golden goose may lead to a wild goose chase instead.

For big and small businesses, the relevance is key to how impactful any story is – whether national TV or otherwise. If you own a bakery, and you’re able to get on national TV by doing a dance contest, the impact will be minimal; if you’re a home service brand, and you’re doing gymnastics on national TV, it’s mostly worthless. Whether in a small-town local newspaper or projected on a national TV show – if the story substance is far removed and irrelevant to your core business, it simply won’t move the needle for you.

Further, the journey toward securing a spot on national TV often entails a deviation, sometimes a significant one, from a brand or cause’s key messaging. In a bid to appease national TV producers, who are on the hunt for the extraordinary and the sensational, clients may find themselves in scenarios where they are juggling swords while swallowing fire, metaphorically speaking, just to make it on-air. This circus act, while it may provide a fleeting moment of fame, begs the question: what’s the real value resulting for the company in this instance?

The essence of impactful public relations lies in the authenticity and resonance of the messaging. It’s about telling compelling stories that echo the values and benefits of the brand or cause. In many cases, the impact of profile stories, when told with spot-on messaging on platforms that resonate with the target audience, outweighs the dazzle of national TV exposure that’s unrelated.

I’ve seen more profound impacts when clients align their public relations strategies with platforms and mediums that honor their core messaging, rather than chasing the fleeting glory of saying they were on national TV. It’s imperative that the quest for national recognition should not eclipse the essence of what the brand or cause stands for. The real golden goose, it turns out, may just be in staying true to one’s narrative and choosing the right platforms to tell it.

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