Today, the Health Foundation of Greater Cincinnati hosted nearly 50 non-profits and a group of local reporters to gain insight on successfully placing stories in the media.

This was offered as part of the Health Foundation's capacity building seminars for non-profits. Classes in marketing, fundraising and evaluations are offered throughout the year.

James Ritchie, the healthcare reporter of the Cincinnati Business Courier presented first.

One of his first statements really struck me, "The reporters at the Business Courier are looking for that third paragraph."

He went on to explain that the third paragraph of a business article usually sounds something like, "Company XYZ grew 27% in 2008 and here's how they did it."

The Business Courier is looking for articles that paint a statistical picture.

They want the numbers.

Currently, the Business Courier has a circulation of roughly 11,000. The average network of their readers is $1M+. A major difference between their publication and others is that their readers are the subject matter, too.

Other tips James offered:
  • Deadlines for the Business Courier occur on Wednesday at noon. So, Wednesday afternoons are a great time to call about next week's stories.
  • The Business Courier rarely covers typical media events (aka press conferences, ribbon cuttings, groundbreakings, etc.) because they are a weekly paper. The dailies and TV news stations will have scooped them long before the Business Courier comes out on Friday.
  • The Business Courier has a segment on WCET on Friday evenings. Publisher Doug Bolton hosts this.

James concluded his segment by urging non-profits to get in the business mind-frame.

"I don't cover non-profits any differently than I would a for-profit company," James said.

You can find archives of James Ritchie's stories here. And, to sign up for the Business Courier's e-mail news, click here.

Stay tuned for similar pitching tips from WVXU, WNKU and the Cincinnati Enquirer.