PR Post-Crisis: What’s Trending in Earned Media Fall 2020

This year is flying by — I can’t believe it’s been 5 months since my last post discussing how PR campaigns have changed in light of COVID.

Although we’re still very much dealing with COVID in the media landscape and beyond, things have changed. Here are some recent trends and PR hits we’ve been seeing from our Zilker Media PR clients. 


Guest contributed articles

Guest posts are still a great way to garner earned media because we’re able to help out the media outlet but providing the content for them. This strategy can be utilized for both banner business publications and trade pubs.

  • Author and investor Mike Smerklo was featured in CEOWorld, writing on how leaders can persist through unprecedented challenges
  • Neurosurgeon Dr. Mark McLaughlin contributed to Business Insider discussing his hack to keep anxiety in check during the pandemic 
  • Chris Doyle of Billd wrote for Texas CEO Magazine on his advice for growing the post-COVID-19 era
  • Read data science and marketing leadership expert Rob Ristagno’s thoughts on balancing sensitivity with strategy for Chief Exec Magazine

If you are an author, another route for contributing content is offering book excerpts to media. For example, an excerpt from Carey Lohrenz’ book Fearless Leadership was recently published in Real Leaders magazine, here. Just make sure you clear the copyright permissions with your publisher!


Diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) content

Post COVID, the biggest story of the year is mainstream America’s reckoning with racial injustice. Media outlets are hungry for this type of content and eager to raise up traditionally marginalized voices. Our client Charlene Wheeless has seen great success in this area, contributing to Authority Magazine, Training Industry, Business Insider and interviewing with StyleCaster, The Newsette, Chief Learning Officer and many more. 



Newsjacking is still one of the strongest strategies we have for garnering earned media. Here are some recent examples of news story we “jacked” for client coverage:


News story: Equity in education in the wake of COVID

Media hit: MAYA Consulting’s Karen Weissinger was featured on top edu podcast High Ed Geek and another consultant, Jay McCullar, was featured for his thought leadership on podcast We Grow Teachers


New story: Hurricane Laura

Media hit: Our client Kyle Herring of All American Public Adjusters appeared on local Houston TV to talk about reassessing insurance needs in response to Laura’s near-miss of Houston. He was also mentioned on Bankrate for his expertise on floor insurance.


News story: Work from home during COVID

Media hit: Work efficiency expert Juliet Funt landed many great media hits around this topic, including Forbes and Fast Company.


News story: High school seniors missing out due to COVID

Media hit: Author and speaker Crystal Chiang shared her expertise on helping high school seniors grieve what they lost from covid with Washington Parent magazine and Memphis Parent magazine.




We’re still loving podcasts as a way to reach a highly loyal, niche audience. Here are some of our favorite client podcast hits of late:


It’s been an unprecedented year, but we’re proud of the way our earned media strategies have continued to meaningfully garner coverage for our clients. If you have any questions about how your PR strategy may be intersecting with the crazy year that is 2020, feel free to reach out to me on Twitter @shelbyjanner. 

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