One quick trick to avoid instant rejection of your pitch

In the days of snail mail, reporters disliked being asked to mail a clipping. Nowadays, they still hate being asked for a link. Here’s why.

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Recently I was searching for sources on Help a Reporter Out, and a PR pro responded with some interesting thoughts.

I was considering quoting him until I read the conclusion of his pitch. “PLEASE send me a URL link to your fine site if you use this info,” he wrote.

Auugggghhhhh! No! Never mind. HARO always brings tons of responses, and some of them had even made similar points to this pitch. So I passed. That request for a URL was enough to disqualify his pitch.

Petty of me, you say? You’re right! Yet I’m not alone. I asked around among reporter friends, and I found others who say PR pros’ requests for URLs are a nuisance.

“While I understand their need, reporters often work on super-tight deadlines,” says Jo Napolitano, a reporter with Newsday. “It’s hard to get everything done on time—and then remember to send a follow-up email. It’s the electronic equivalent of sources asking for reporters to mail them stories.”

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