The public relations pitch. If you’re in charge of your company’s public relations efforts, it’s the bread and butter of your job. If you can’t grab the media’s attention when you need it most, you’re in a lot of trouble. Fortunately, if you’re just starting out or if media interest has been low lately, there are a number of methods you can utilize to revamp those pitches and start getting results.
First of all, your subject line needs to do half the work. That’s the first part of the e-mail that anyone is going to see, and it has to work to get people to open the message. Make your subject line the headline of the story. Not only does that get your mind focused on writing captivating copy, but it shows your media contacts the potential your story has for their outlet.
Second, no one likes feeling like part of the crowd. Personalize your e-mails as much as possible. Ideally, it should go beyond simply mentioning the reporter by name, as everyone knows there is software available to do that. Reference anything that shows that a person (and not a computer) customized it, especially for their outlet, and why you thought this would be a good story for them.
Along the same lines, you need to make it clear why they should care about your story. Maybe it’s because the news is something their readers care about. Maybe it’s because of something the recipient had mentioned once. If you can’t think of why the recipient and their audience should care about your message, then don’t bother sending it.
Last, make sure the message is available on your company’s website, and include the link in the e-mail you send out. Besides giving people a place to find it, it’s also an excellent tool for SEO.
If you haven’t had much luck lately with your PR pitches, take time to re-analyze them and apply the above pointers. Don’t be afraid to call some of your contacts, too, and ask them if there’s something you’re doing wrong.