For now on, I want PR professionals to think about whether their job is “media relations” or “media blasting.”
Many journalists rightfully complain about some of the terrible tactics public relations professionals employ. From what I see and hear, this complaint has some warrant to it. Many PR folks resort to blasting their message as far and wide as possible. The idea is that the more wild pitches that are sent, the better likelihood of placement. Those who adopt this strategy are media blasting.
Media relations has a different connotation. It seems obvious to say that the term “relations” in a business context means establishing a connection. Yet in the hustle to get media releases out the door, it would be a good idea for PR professionals to look up this word in the dictionary. It is hard to imagine how the random press release blast strategy relates to this term.
Sure, pitching stories is part of the job description for many PR pros. But it seems that the majority of our efforts are focused on this activity alone. There is far more involved in relationship building.
Here are some other tactics to consider in building media “relations” that don’t involve story pitches: