Gifts for reporters? Don’t bother

If you believe chocolate and flowers are the way to a journalist’s heart, guess again.

If you believe chocolate and flowers are the way to a journalist’s heart, guess again

What has public relations become? It seems to be a race to get the attention of some reporter, editor or producer before your competition. This inevitably turns into a gifting war.

Venture into any PR firm on any given day and you’ll find an intern wrapping a package — under the watchful eye of an account executive — that’s intended for a reporter or producer.

These assistants spend much of their time purchasing luxurious gift wrap and tissue paper, packaging these items and oftentimes express-messengering them to the recipient’s office so they arrive in pristine condition. (Little do they know that the packages are likely to be thrown around in the messenger center for hours or days before making their way to the recipient’s desk.)

Agencies spend incredible amounts of time, effort and their clients’ money sweetening up journalists with chocolates, flowers and balloons in the hope of winning a feature story.

My advice: Don’t bother. What journalists want from PR pros are creativity, dependability and thought — not bouquets and bonbons.

Listen to what some of them have to say on the subject:

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