3 Steps for the Perfect PR Pitch

3 Steps for the Perfect PR Pitch


Do you know why small business marketers don’t do their own PR? They feel it’s too expensive to hire a firm. Or they feel too unqualified to try their hand. In fact, with a little direction it’s not hard to craft and serve up your own story idea to the media. (First tip: It needs to be newsworthy). Here are three steps for the perfect pitch:

1.  Get to the point. Once you know the story you want to share (see earlier post: “telling your story”), draft a short email pitch that will catch the interest of your target journalist. Get to the point with an opening the journalist can relate to. Here’s an example:

Hi Carley,
You know how fewer people are shopping at the mall these days? Turns out one strip mall is bringing in 100 percent more shoppers than it did last year -- in large part because of its eye-popping signage … I’d be happy to connect you with the sign designer.

2.  Make it timely. Journalists are always looking to write about topics that will coincide with an upcoming event or activity. Think cultural and sporting events, holidays, trends, weather or elections. Offer a good tie-in with your business, well in advance of the event, and you’re halfway to a pitch they can’t turn down. For example, if your company makes the equipment the local fire department will be using to shoot off their 4th of July fireworks, pitch your local newspaper a “most people don’t realize” story.

3.  Be courteous and respectful. Keep in mind the reporter’s job is not to publicize your business. They’re looking for topics that will inform and entertain their audience, and they have short attention spans. Make their job easier with a story idea that serves both their needs and yours. Don’t send this in a generic email to several journalists at once. Read what your target journalist has written recently, and tailor your pitch specifically to them. They will take notice. And if you serve up a concise, punchy story idea on a platter with the right elements, they may just take your idea and run with it.

Here are a few more tips for making a great PR pitch.

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