Post 73: A new variety of ‘Worst pitch ever’ in which experts and chancers are intermingled to no-one’s benefit

I issue a lot of RFIs to the PR community, but often the responses are odd.

They go like this:

Me: I’m interested in chatting to people about a certain issue

PR: Would you like to talk to my client about this issue?

This is where it gets weird, because an awful lot of the time I have not met the client and do not know anything about their company. So it is impossible for me to judge if they have any expertise or are worth the time taken by an interview.

Experience tells me that often they will not be, because PRs try to shoe-horn their clients onto the phone in areas that are tangential or marginal. I have done many, many interviews of this sort that have been a BIG waste of time because the interviewee has very little to say.

Email responses of the type above usually see me respond that I would love to receive a little of the proposed interviewee’s thinking in advance, before deciding on an interview.

Fewer than 50% of those requests are met, which says to me that the proposed interviewee never knew anything in the first place.

Seems to me we could all save ourselves some time by cutting straight to the chase with a description of a proposed interviewee’s ideas on a subject BEFORE the back ‘n’ forth.

What do you think?

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