In PR circles, that’s called the “spray and pray” technique. You might even spray it to dozens, perhaps even hundreds, of journalists. And then you pray that somebody will bite.
They almost never do. Here’s why:
Because it isn’t personalized, journalists can tell instantly that it’s a one-size-fits-all pitch. There’s nothing special about it for their media outlet. You’re feeding them from the same trough as all the other journalists. When I worked as an editor, people pitched stories to me that had absolutely nothing to do with our geographic area or our readers.
If you won’t bother to find out about the outlet you’re pitching
and the reporter whom you’re asking to write the story,
why should they bother covering you?????
The next time you pitch a journalist, your pitch should send the following message:
- I know who you are.
- I know what you cover.
- I’m familiar with your media outlet.
- I know your audience and what they need
- I can solve their problem (or I can entertain them)
How do you let them know that without coming right out and saying it?
One way is by researching the journalist and looking for clues about things they think are important. Another is crafting the pitch in such a way that it sounds like it was written only for them.
Learn More Aug. 18
When I worked as a newspaper reporter and editor for more than two decades, I accepted and rejected thousands of story ideas. I’ll show you all the elements that go into a perfect pitch when I host the webinar A Simple 5-Part Formula for Delivering the Perfect Media Pitch and Hitting it Out of the Park from 3 to 4:30 p.m. Eastern Time on Thursday, Aug. 18.
I’ll explain the missing step that trips up most people. And I’ll give you lots of story ideas and angles that may never have occurred to you.
Your handouts will include a list of all story ideas and a few sample pitches that really caught journalists’ attention.