Post 66:08 I cannot believe I have to write this, but here goes

Hey PRs. Two tips!

  1. READ THE PUBLICATIONS YOU PITCH TO BEFORE YOU PITCH TO THEM
    Note the sections they include. Form an opinion about the type of readers the book or site cultivates. This will avoid you wasting time when calling journalists with bad ideas. It will also mean you are actually delivering value for your clients by making informed, likely-to-succeed pitches instead of stabbing blindly in the dark and making them and you look like amateurs.
  2. “MY CLIENT PARTICIPATES IN THE MARKET YOU ARE WRITING ABOUT” IS NOT A PITCH
    About 50% of approaches I receive from PRs consist of nothing more than “We do the thing you are writing about. So interview us, please.” You’ve got to do better than that, folks. Have an angle, an idea, a point of differentiation to offer. Follow Tip 1 to develop these points. The people that do this, get interviews. The ones that assume their status as market participants makes them worthy of my time earn opprobrium, not coverage.
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5 thoughts on “Post 66:08 I cannot believe I have to write this, but here goes

  1. I’m pretty sure I’ve seen this sort of post* from frustrated journalists at least once every year since 1994.
    Tim.
    *Of course, back then it was an impassioned plea by email, at its most sophisticated, not a post.

  2. This is spot on.

    In fact the problem is compounded here in New Zealand. Much of our PR comes from Australia, but many Australian PR critters ‘assume’ titles in New Zealand are identical to similarly-named titles in Australia.

    For example, they ‘assume’ the New Zealand Herald is the local equivalent of the Sydney Morning Herald. It isn’t. And as far as its specialist coverage of areas like IT are concerned, it isn’t remotely close.

    As for your point 2:
    “My client participates in the AUSTRALIAN market you are writing about” is an even weaker pitch.

    And yes Tim, we’ve been saying this since long before 1994. Which goes to show how the communications part of being a communications professional is often a one-way street.

  3. Always interested to hear your thoughts on PRs from the journo side of the fence. Old contact from Edelman in US sent this through and thought you might be sympathetic to a few of these experiences -http://proprtips.com/

    Sarah 🙂

  4. Nice one 🙂

    The one that cracked me up was Tip #42: Restroom pitch – What sorta PR sees a restroom visit as an opportunity!? haha

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