The most essential trait for PR superstars

Writing is important, of course, and people skills can’t be underestimated, but for this author, one attribute stands head and shoulders above the rest.

Ragan Insider Premium Content
Ragan Insider Content

That story you agonized over? You know the one: the one you rehashed, reworked, started over twice. How did it go?

Did it grow legs and run riot across the nation’s news desks? Or did it stagnate, unloved and unwanted, at the bottom of someone’s deleted folder?

It doesn’t matter how long you spend, how much elbow grease you put in or how many second opinions you seek. The real test comes only when you start sharing your story with the people you want to cover it.

For a recent product launch I massaged and massaged this one press release—gently at first, to ease out the newsworthy angles, and then more vigorously, like an overenthusiastic masseuse, to really get it singing. It was big, bold, beautiful and oh, so newsworthy—or so I thought.

I picked up the phone and dialed the editor of a national newspaper. I’ve got a great story for you, I said, before launching into my carefully honed elevator pitch.

Bravado drained from my voice in direct correlation to the disinterested typing at the other end. I tried another newspaper, then another, and then—well, you get the picture.

To read the full story, log in.
Become a Ragan Insider member to read this article and all other archived content.
Sign up today

Already a member? Log in here.
Learn more about Ragan Insider.