Traditional Pitching Principles Still Important Today

The ever-evolving media market can change daily. Turnover can be vast and happen so quickly that even great media-focused websites like Vocus and Cision aren’t able to keep up. While the PR tools of today, including social media, email and media list-building websites can be helpful, it’s important to remember the basics.

Know the reporter’s beat

hatI learned early on in my PR career the power of due diligence when creating media lists. Coming to Castle from a smaller agency, we didn’t have the budget for online tools and, therefore, had to conduct our own research. Becoming familiar with the targeted publication/media outlet is a great start. From there, you can narrow down your focus to articles/reporters that cover the topic you’re currently pitching.

Target the pitch

successReporters receive hundreds of pitches a week; therefore, tailoring your pitch to make it appealing to their specific audience and following-up when they’re not on deadline is vital. If a reporter makes their phone number available, call them. Although they might not be interested in the pitch, this can be a great opportunity to receive first-hand knowledge on what they’re currently working on for future pitches.

Build a relationship

handshakeIt’s important to keep in mind that the relationship you will build with these reporters should be mutually beneficial. Placing a story shouldn’t feel like a ‘win,’ but rather the first step in becoming a trusted source for timely content and expert commentary.

Although it takes time, researching the right media contact, creating targeted lists, tailoring a pitch to fit the journalist’s audience and building relationships will prove to be much more successful in the long run.

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