5 elements of a successful embargo

Some say this tenet of the PR profession is fading in influence. Here’s how to still make an embargo work for you.

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The embargo still works if it’s executed properly. Every embargo should nail the following five elements:

Story. This may seem obvious, but it bears repeating: You need a story worth embargoing (read: a story that is worth covering). Not only that, but keep in mind that to offer a journalist a true embargo, you must be able to guarantee that you can deliver on some degree of exclusivity. You can’t embargo a story about a product release if the item has already hit shelves, nor can you embargo information that is already circulating via social media.

Access. PR 101 states that if you offer a journalist an interview, you’d better be able to make that interview happen, and in a timely manner. By embargoing a story, you are giving the reporter ample time to put together a factual, polished piece. Coordinate necessary interviews well in advance of the embargo deadline, or risk a trigger-happy editor preemptively publishing an article.

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