Top Five Media Pitching Tips
One of PR’s most frequently asked questions is, “What is the ‘best’ way to pitch the media?” And while everyone has their own opinion as to what works best, I’ve compiled a list of the top five tips that have worked for me and led to great coverage.
1. Know Your Audience
It has been repeated by media of all kinds, from bloggers to high profile editors at The New York Times, that their biggest pet peeve is getting a cookie cutter pitch – one that sometimes that has nothing to do with what they write about. If you’ve been dying to be in a certain publication or covered by a specific reporter, it’s crucial that you know what they cover and what they’ve written about recently. The more you can demonstrate that you’re familiar with their interests and that your pitch aligns with their beat(s), the more likely you are to get a response.
2. Use the News
Review the news, regularly. Stay up to date on what is happening in and out of your clients’ industries. Freshly released studies can help you transform your pitch to an article with an evergreen angle while piggybacking current events can be a great way to garner timely, relevant coverage.
3.Tweet, Connect and Like – Social Media is a Vital Tool
I can’t count the number of times that I’ve emailed what I thought to be an extremely relevant topic to an editor, only to receive no response to my initial pitch or follow up. If this ever happens to you (and I’m sure it has!), don’t forget that now more than ever, journalists are communicating via social media, particularly Twitter. A Tweet mentioning something of interest to them or asking what their preferred method of contact is, shows that you’re interested in them and making their lives easier.
4. Remove “Rejection” from Your Vocabulary
Did you send a well-thought-out pitch to an editor only to receive a simple “no thanks”? Don’t leave it at that. Thank them for taking them time to respond, ask for feedback (do they ever plan on writing on that topic?), or ask if there is a different editor that would be interested in the topic.
5. Shorter is Better
It’s no secret; editors get hundreds of emails per day. They don’t have time to read through a few paragraphs of fluff. That’s not to say that you shouldn’t be creative, just do it with brevity. Something humorous, when used appropriately, can help to get the reader’s attention. Just remember to present the most relevant and eye-catching information in as little words as possible. It’s OK to leave them looking for more.
Post by Alyson Kuritz
Zer0 to 5ive Strategist