9 ways to get your client on the air

Gordon Deal, host of The Wall Street Journal‘s This Morning, explains what it takes to get his attention—and that of other media.

Were you wondering why you had no takers for that “black Friday” pitch you sent to the press—on Thanksgiving Day?

Or why talk show hosts ignored your punchy pitch that you emailed the day after the tsunami in Japan?

You’re too smart for that? Good. But if you’re finding yourself baffled at the short-shrift your pitches are getting, tune in your dial to Gordon Deal, radio host of The Wall Street Journal‘s This Morning.

Speaking to a recent Ragan conference, Deal made clear he’s no media snob, scoffing at the hardworking PR pros who flood his Outlook Express inbox. He finds some great guests through pitches.

But if you can’t get to the point, or you make inflated claims to your client’s importance, Deal reaches for the delete key.

Here’s how to catch his attention—and that of other media:

1. Know the medium.

For TV, Deal says, you need a telegenic guest and video props. Newspapers need deeper background information. Blogs want pictures, videos and links, while magazines often require high-quality photos. And as for his medium, it’s got to be someone with a good voice for telephone interviews.

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