Like it or loathe it – no European PR strategy is complete without Germany. As expected, Germans tend to approach IT Security a little differently from the rest of the world –so it’s a no-nonsense approach that separates the wheat from the chaff when it comes to devising a successful PR program.
Here we have compiled our top 5 secrets of success for breaking into Germany for you:
1. Don’t jump on the news
The German Government – and in turn the media – are considerably more cautious at reporting threats, breaches, hacks and related information. In an attempt to keep sensitive information away from the public (and criminals), few details are communicated and few media outlets will want to publish them, if in doubt. Hence, the ‘rapid response’ strategy we thrive on in the UK is mostly ill-advised for Germany.
2. Keep it Factual
Germans like facts – always have, always will. The more technical detail and insight you can provide in an article or interview, the better. As a technology nation, editors and readers want to understand as much about how a technology works – rather than just what the purpose is – as possible. Get a tech savvy person to answer any questions, cut out any fluff and the editor will ask for more.
3. Less is More
The IT media landscape in Germany is more condensed than in English-speaking countries. Fewer publications, many of which still run print editions, mean that quality rather than quantity is the key here. Most key publications will not run articles by the same company more than two or three times a year. Therefore, avoid mass saturation with a barrage of releases and articles.
4. Keep it Local
German journalists like to communicate in German – especially (as mentioned before) as they want to get as much technical detail as possible. Having a German spokesperson who is media trained helps greatly for securing successful interviews. The opportunity to meet key journalists in person is also invaluable when working to establish a company in a new region.
5. Listen to the editor
Knowing which content is relevant to which publication, and journalist within the publication, will make sure they will take your content seriously and ask for more. The best way to get high impact coverage is to work closely with the editor to develop articles that deliver value to both reader and companies.
Taking on a new territory can be daunting – however with a little common sense and local knowledge I have found the German media among the friendliest I have worked with. Germany may have fewer IT publications but the majority of those that do exist are long standing and well respected. Get into their good books and they will be your allies for years to come.