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6 Do’s and Don’ts of Working with Journalists in 2024

By June 27, 2024No Comments

Cision’s 2024 Global State of the Media Report was just released, offering a gold mine of insights for public relations professionals on how to better collaborate with journalists.

This annual report is an essential resource, shedding light on journalists’ preferences for how they like to be contacted and pitched as well as realistic expectations for earned media opportunities in today’s dynamic media landscape.

Cision surveyed over 3,000 journalists worldwide to take their temperature on media relations in the current climate as well as how public relations professionals can capture their attention. At Durée & Company, a Fort Lauderdale and Aspen-based public relations and marketing agency, we rely on industry information and resources like this to enhance our work.

Here are the key takeaways that resonated the most with us that we think brands should note to stay on top of the pulse when it comes to pitching and improving media relationships.

Keep data top of mind.

In the report, 56 percent of respondents said they were relying on data just as much as last year to shape their editorial strategy. But 12 percent said they were “much more” focused on data and 25 percent said “slightly more” concentrated on this information. That means 93 percent of the journalists surveyed are looking closely at audience metrics, views, engagement and content shared by third parties when it comes to developing their editorial content and understanding what kind of news stories resonate the most with the public.

This means brands should utilize a PR team who knows how to leverage data insights to pitch stories they know will resonate with a journalist’s audience. It’ll increase the likelihood that the story gets covered.

They still want to receive press releases.

Three out of four of the journalists surveyed in the Cision 2024 State of the Media report said they’d still like to get press releases from public relations professionals. But they also want original research and exclusives. Keep this in mind before the next product launch or announcement. Is there a one-on-one with the CEO that a publicist can pitch to a journalist? Were there interesting findings from a customer service survey that spurred the latest product development? The more niche, special, and unique the data and information the publicist shares with media, the better chances they’ll bite on it for a story.

They prefer to receive email pitches.

Nearly 90 percent of those surveyed said they preferred to get pitches from PR pros in their emails. But the majority of journalists said that fewer than 25 percent of the 50-plus pitches that land in their inboxes each week are relevant. An experienced public relations agency has a keen understanding of how the journalist-publicity relationship works. At Durée & Company, we leverage existing relationships with journalists and our decades of experience to ensure we’re only pitching stories that are relevant to each media outlet’s beat. This helps ensure our emails are well-received and media pros know they’re getting great story ideas from our clients.

Understand how journalists are using generative AI.

Many media professionals have been experimenting with AI but when asked “Are you using generative AI tools in your work?” 53 percent of those surveyed said they didn’t use it at all. That means at least 47 percent are using these tools in some capacity, whether to do research, write social media posts, or create outlines. The Cision report suggests that public relations professionals can leverage these findings by offering to help journalists out, perhaps by offering to provide infographics, background research on a topic that’s being pitched, and assistance with ideation.

They’re ramping up activity on Instagram, LinkedIn and Facebook.

Journalists said that their media outlets plan to be more active on Instagram (44 percent), LinkedIn (39 percent), and Facebook (34 percent) in the coming year. Brands should be interacting with media outlets on these platforms and sharing stories from the outlets on their agencies’ feeds as well as having clients interacting with sought-after media outlets on these social media platforms. Alternatively, it’s crucial that businesses share interesting stories, news, announcements, and trends on social media. By posting content that the journalists and their media outlets are already sharing, it’s more likely that they’ll keep a brand or their experts in mind for stories.

Understand what journalists don’t want.

While a brand needs to know best practices for working with journalists in 2024, it’s important to understand what gets under the skin of media professionals. That’s where large surveys like this 2024 Cision’s State of the Media report are extremely valuable. Only 8 percent of journalists said it’s okay to “follow up” more than once. In 2023, 17 percent said the same. Worse than too many follow-ups on the same pitch? These offenders might make a journalist block you:

  • Spamming journos with irrelevant pitches
  • Providing inaccurate information
  • Dodging questions or not being transparent
  • Pitches that sound like marketing brochures
  • Failing to respond within the journalist’s deadline
  • Contacting the pro on social media when they haven’t met
  • Addressing them by the wrong name (!)
  • Attaching files to emails instead of embedding links. This can clog up their inboxes.

How to give journalists what they want and need? Focus on relevant pitches, expert connections to sources at the company, and data.

At Durée & Company, we work tirelessly to make sense of the new communications mediums, the latest trends, and the best editorial opportunities to help companies meet our client’s goals. Contact us today to learn more about our services and how we can help your brand grow.


About Durée & Company, Inc.

Founded in 1999, Durée & Company is a full-service, well-respected and highly creative public relations and marketing agency serving a diverse client base of local, national and international consumer brands, landmark industries, business leaders and philanthropists from its offices in Fort Lauderdale, Florida and Aspen, Colorado. Practice areas include nonprofit, hospitality, business, lifestyle, health and wellness, legal, real estate, yacht and marine as well as cannabis, psychedelics, and other emerging industries. Durée & Company is a member of some of the nation’s most elite professional organizations including PR Boutiques International™ (PRBI), The Cannabis Marketing Association and is a corporate partner of Cannabis LAB. To learn more, call 954-723-9350; go to; or Join the social conversation and follow Durée & Company on FacebookInstagramXYouTube and LinkedIn at @DureeCoPR.


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