PRs: Here’s how to get my attention…
You don’t get a more classic professional love-hate story than PRs and journalists. On one side, a client pushing a PR to get their story out there, as far and as wide as possible, and on the other a journalist, narrowing their focus to search for the best content to serve their audience.
Sometimes the two come together perfectly; and often, they clash.
There are many PRs I respect, admire and absolutely love working with, but there are a few more who I’m not sure get what I — and many other journalists do — on a day-to-day basis. Which of course, is through no fault of their own — so I have decided to write this post!
Here’s the best way to get my attention, and ultimately, provide you with a better chance of getting coverage:
1. An email is fine. No, really.
I read all of my emails, every morning. I may not always reply straight away (if I did, I’d never do any actual writing), but even if it takes a week, I’ll get back to you. There is no need to call me if I don’t call you.
2. Pitch me via Twitter
I actually love this. DM me, tweet me, follow me. It actually gets my attention far more effectively than email as I can put a face to a name.
3. If I say I will publish a piece, don’t constantly chase
I am a slave to my very well-planned out Trello board, so there is absolutely no chance I have forgotten about your piece; it’s just in the pipeline!
4. You don’t have to pretend to be my mate
Or prove that you have read my running blog, or fave my tweets. If your client and content is good, then that’s enough for me! Unless you actually are interested in getting to know me, in which case I am more than happy to chat. :)
5. Please provide everything I ask for
If I ask for info on the author plus a head shot and a bio, please send it to me alongside a piece. Lots and lots of PRs don’t provide what I ask for straight away, and I sometimes end up chasing them, in a strange turn of events!
6. My name is Rachael
Not Rachel, Rebecca or — and I’m not even kidding — Robert.
7. Remember that I’m not a machine
I’m actually quite a friendly person. While you don’t have to be my best mate, a nice ‘how are you?’ or ‘thanks for publishing!’ or something other than an automated email sent out to 500,000 contacts at once would be really appreciated.
8. If it’s exclusive, I will love you
Trust me on this one.
9. If you’ve read the publication and know the audience, I’ll love you even more
10. Avoid cliche phrases
I know this can’t be helped sometimes, but I read things like ‘I feel your readers would really benefit from this…’ about 10 times a day.
So that’s it — 10 quite basic things you can do to get my attention (exclusivity, spelling my name right, being friendly, acknowledging that your client’s content is safe in my hands if I agree to it, etc!)
I completely understand PRs are under deadlines and pressure too, in different ways, so I’m more than happy if you want to chat and let me know how I — and other journos — can work better with you, too!
Just drop me a line here, on twitter (@rachpower10) or at email@example.com.
This article was first published on LinkedIn Pulse.