Editorial Page

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Editorial Page
 If you are trying to reach opinion leaders a good technique is to get on the editorial pages


If you are trying to reach opinion leaders and citizens who are actively interested in public affairs, a good technique is to get on the editorial pages of major daily newspapers.

The indirect approach is to meet with the editorial boards of the newspapers and ask them to write an editorial supporting your idea, project, or cause. Another approach is to submit short essays that are called op-ed articles, intended to appear opposite the editorial page. When all else fails, there is always the standard letter to the editor.

Editorial Boards

The key editors of a newspaper meet on a regular bases to determine editorial policy. They would be interested in talking to you if your employer or client is involved in a current controversy or in emerging issues. They do not want to meet with you if the purpose is just to get publicity.

In general, you contact the editorial page editor and request a meeting with the newspaper's editorial board. Most editors want a tightly written one or two-page letter outlining whom you represent, what issues you would like to cover, and why your people are the best qualified to discuss the issue. Don't weigh down your first letter with a press kit or other background information.

Once you have an appointment with the editorial board, you should develop a message that focuses on three or four key points. You should also decide in advance what you want to accomplish in the meeting. Is it simply to let editors know about your side of the issue, or do you want them to write an editorial supporting you?

The best approach is to have a well-informed senior person in the organization give the presentation. This may be the company president, but it can be an expert in a particular field like law, accounting, or environmental standards, depending on the issue. In general, your role as the public relations person is not to give the presentation but rather to make arrangements for the meeting and help your spokespersons get ready for it.

If you represent a community organization, you should think about meeting with the editorial board to arrange for an editorial supporting your particular goal. Newspapers are community boosters and do write editorials supporting worthy causes.


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