Media pitching can sometimes feel like a game of darts – that is, if there’s no strategy at play. A media pitch is an email that a publicist sends to journalists, editors or media outlets to entice them to write an article or cover news about a client. Whether that news is a restaurant opening, the unveiling of a new product or something in between, there is an art to garnering great coverage.
While crossing our fingers is just a part of the job sometimes, at Fort Lauderdale and Aspen-based public relations and marketing agency Durée & Company, we know that there’s more to pitching than just luck. Crafting a pitch entails researching dozens of journalists and outlets, tailoring and tweaking the pitch based on a writer’s beat and including helpful materials, like a press release, images or other relevant links. And, these are just the basics!
It is important not only to think about the journalist and their style, but also the end-reader. That is, who needs to hear about this product or service, which outlet will they be reading and how will they perceive the information? Thinking ahead is something publicists do in their sleep.
When it comes to media pitching, some PR professionals may lay awake at night praying for a hit. At Durée & Company, we have some surefire ways to secure the coverage of your dreams.
Pitch to the Right Journalists
Research is the first step in securing notable coverage for any client. To create a solid media list, you must research the type of articles the brand or business might be featured in. Then, target the journalists that write them. For instance, our client Eat Me Guilt Free is a protein-packed, healthy brownie brand, which means we target food, lifestyle and wellness outlets, as well as local South Florida outlets, considering the brand is based in Miami.
For us, preparation for the holidays start in July. Part of our process includes researching the best holiday gift guides from last year. We then make sure the outlets and writers who wrote them are at the top of our media lists. Spending ample time to curate a media list will foster more results — or bites — in the long run.
Write a compelling hook
A journalist’s inbox is undoubtedly a scary place. So, the subject line of a pitch is technically the hook, as this is the first thing journalists will see. Use persuasive language, exciting action verbs and relevant tie-ins, like Hashtag Holidays. It could mean the difference between an email being read or tossed straight into the trash. Even better if the subject line can easily be used as a headline – less work for the journalist! In addition, the gist or main point of the pitch should be easily digested from the subject line and first sentence or two of the email. Journalists don’t have time to dissect a dissertation!
Anticipate the angle
It is important to identify an outlet’s editorial strategy to anticipate what types of stories and voices they might need. Then it’s time to tailor the pitch to fit perfectly into the puzzle or offer up clients who can provide expertise in an interview. PR professionals not only have great relationships with journalists, but they also closely monitor the types of articles they write. That way, when it’s time to pitch, we know exactly who to contact and how to position the client. We use keywords and phrases to show we’ve done our digging and we know what they need.
There are several things to stay mindful of when pitching journalists. Writing out the journalist’s name (spelled correctly) in the email is common courtesy. Don’t just send out a mass “Hello” to 100 contacts. Also, time the pitch to reach their inboxes at a reasonable time — not 5 p.m. on a Friday. Although it sometimes feels tedious, it’s important to sift through media lists to make sure there are no duplicate contacts. Pestering is NOT a part of pitching.
If you’d like to learn more about how Durée & Company can secure stunning coverage for your brand with our pointed media pitching efforts, contact us at Durée & Company.
About Durée & Company, Inc.
Durée & Company, Inc. is an award-winning, full-service public relations, marketing and special events firm founded in 1999. The firm has offices in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, and Aspen, Colorado. Durée & Company serves the corporate, agency and nonprofit arenas for local, national and international clients. Services include public relations, social media, marketing, digital marketing, content development, advertising, special events, branding, radio promotions, affiliate marketing and more. Durée & Company clients include well-known names in yachting, business, real estate, hospitality, travel, health and wellness, cannabis and psychedelics, art and culture, fashion, nonprofit organizations, cryptocurrency and technology, legal and professional services. Durée & Company is a member of PR Boutiques International™ (PRBI), an international network of boutique PR firms. To learn more, call 954-723-9350; go to dureeandcompany.com; cannabismarketingpr.com; or psychedelicpr.com. Join the social conversation and follow Durée & Company on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube and LinkedIn at @DureeCoPR.