Public Relations: Your Perfect Pitch on Beat. Seven Ways to Step Up Your Game.
What’s in a public relations pitch?
As a public relations professional, the end-goal of pitching a client’s story to any media outlet, blogger or beat reporter is to gain maximum, positive exposure. While it is important that the public knows your story, it is equally important to secure the best coverage possible, i.e. the most appropriate media outlets or social media channels. Submitting a solid pitch to an appropriate news outlet, reporter or editor is by far the best way to position clients in front of the perfect beat. The key to positioning however, is knowing what stories qualify as newsworthy.
Public Relations: Your Pitch on Beat
Before pitching, whether via phone, in-person or email, be certain to understand and research your targeted media professionals and outlets. When considering media outlets, make sure that your story is in tempo with the rhythm of the targeted reporter’s and outlet’s beats? Because public attitudes and interests constantly change, remember that the definition of what is newsworthy also changes. In order to stay on top of what’s newsworthy, you have to follow the news. You have to follow your targeted media outlets and, you have to follow targeted bloggers and reporters. That’s what we do.
Public Relations: The Perfect Pitch
Only relevant stories get picked up. Make stories relatable to your targeted audience and your targeted outlets. Brad Phillips, aka “Mr. Media Training,” shares 11 topics that journalists consider newsworthy. A few of those topics are:
- Local Stories
- Extremes and Superlatives
- Timely and Relevant
Once you’ve determined that your news story is, in fact, “newsworthy,” it’s time to deploy your pitch. Here are some important reminders to consider prior to submission:
- Focus on the email or letter Subject Line – It matters
- Follow the submission guidelines
- Review submission lead times
- Make sure your document is grammatically correct and spelling-error free
- Keep the submission to under three paragraphs
- No competitive name dropping
- Refrain from emailing high-res photos
Elena of PR in Your Pajamas offers additional tips on writing a pitch that editors will love which include sending your pitch to the right person, which by the way is super important, and including quotable quotes or statistics.
When it’s time to make those follow-up calls, be clear and succinct. Be a resource for editors and reporters – become the authority. For bonus points, include references from the reporter’s beat. This allows you to establish a rapport and build a relationship with your targeted audience. Pitching is more than cut, copy, paste and repeat. Pitching shouldn’t be or feel static. Reporters, bloggers writers, producers and editors appreciate it when you understand their beat and have done the homework of ensuring that your story fits with theirs.
Are you pitching to media outlets, reporters or channels? Personal contacts matter and we have them. Let Impact Consulting Enterpises pitch for you. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Cheryl McCants – Your Marketing Mama