Reporters and bloggers are inundated with news tips and story ideas every day. How can you make your news stand out and cut through the noise? Follow these six rules for better pitching to land more media hits and make reporters pay attention:
1. Do your research.
A successful pitch begins when you send your news to the right reporter. Go to the publication’s website, see who writes about your industry and read their articles. If you don’t determine the right contact, your pitch will end up in the trash.
2. Create a news angle.
Journalists have to deliver value, which means you do, too. Reporters often won’t pick up product or corporate announcements, so explain the value your story provides.
How will your story affect readers’ lives? Why should they care? What is the compelling angle that makes your announcement real news?
3. Get to the point.
Journalists don’t have time to read a long, wordy pitch. Don’t waste words by setting up your news—get to the point and cut the fluff. Deliver your news in as few words as possible while still communicating your key messages.
4. Pay attention to detail.
Never underestimate the power of proofreading. Make sure you spell names correctly, check facts and have proper grammar and punctuation. Even small slipups will cause your story to lose credibility.
5. Leave them wanting more.
A well-written pitch will prompt a journalist to follow up with you for more information. While you should clearly communicate the important points of your news upfront, leave room in your pitch for a follow-up conversation.
6. Build a relationship.
The constant nature of online news presents a unique opportunity to build a relationship with journalists. Identify key industry publications and/or journalists, and comment and share the relevant articles they publish. When you add value to the conversation, journalists will begin to recognize you and could eventually seek you out as a source when they’re on their next deadline.
Stick to these tactics to establish your brand as a credible source of information and forge relationships with journalists. It’s a sure way to get your news in front of the people who matter most: your prospects and customers.