In all our organization's years of advancing the homeschool football developments, we are rather shocked that some teams seem to actively avoid media promotion. For all the efforts to develop a sustained organization to enhance our student athletes' opportunities, we see many teams simply fail to allow the media to play a positive role in building a great athletic program.
Local and state media are an essential element to building a great homeschool athletic program. If you have a good relationship with the sports writers and talkers, athletes will start showing up to join your team in greater numbers. Lets talk about how to get your team noticed.
Ten Steps To Better Media Coverage
2. Don't treat the media like they're the anti-Christ. You may have moral objections to the way their editorial board and news journalism is handled, but the sports personnel would rather not be the whipping boy for your discontent.
3. Media outlets don't owe your team anything. Be thankful they are willing to report your scores and help them get the info they can use. Just ask nicely and accept what they give you.
5. Call the sports department on a weekday afternoon and get instructions on how to text the varsity game scores in (halftime & final). Confirm that they know the name of your team and how it's spelled. Tell your fans which media will post your team's scores.
6. Email a few professional-grade photos of your 4-5 key athletes. Be sure each photo filename matches the athlete's correct full name and give a bio of the athlete's age, position, and appropriate accomplishments. Any human interest stories associated with your athletes should be included. That way when an athlete has a break-out week, it's easier for media to write about the accomplishment without having to track your folks down on a weekend, trying to get a photo and background bio.
8. If you don't have a public relations director for your team, appoint one. The director should be focused on providing information, hospitality to media, and making arrangements for postgame media interviews with the coach and/or athletes.
9. Capitalize on games against popular opponents. If more media outlets follow the other team, take the opportunity to introduce your organization and thank them for covering this big game.
10. Too often, homeschool sports teams manage their varsity programs similar to how soccer-moms organize rec league. If you're not on their email list, you don't get told anything about cancellations, changes of venue, or other developments.
The season is just starting. If you don't have these media matters dealt with, now is the time to capitalize on the benefits of a flourishing relationship with your local media.
Oh!, one more thing... NEVER try to charge a journalist gate admission to your games! Make sure your gate crew knows this. In fact, a chilled bottle of water from the concession stand makes a great appreciation gift for showing up.