Public relations has evolved to include new communications strategies made possible by digital technology. Content, in all its manifestations, is the driving force behind our new way of generating awareness and offering news to the public. No longer reliant solely on journalists to tell our clients’ stories, we can circulate our own news. But does this mean pitching is dead?

 

A resounding “no.” Digital technology allows us to take the reins and publish our own content on any platform we wish, but there’s still incredible value in our relationships with journalists and the print and digital publications for whom they work. Despite the popularity and success of content, everyone wants to see their companies featured in known publications. It’s unlikely that will ever change. The pitch isn’t dead, but the old ways of pitching are outdated.

 

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Don’t underestimate the exposure bloggers can generate for your clients

Bloggers

Old-school PR pros and businesses executives fail to see the value of being featured in blogs. Bloggers are every bit as valuable as traditional journalists, and in many cases, they have broader reach. No longer a generation of diarists, bloggers are the new journalists, armed with press passes and tens of thousands of fans and followers. You must pitch bloggers.

 

 

 

 

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Make your email pitches short, sweet, and to the point

Email

There’s never a reason to pick up a phone when an email will do. Journalists are incredibly busy people, and inundating them with phone calls is a proven way to get your name on a journalist’s extensive list of hated PR people. When pitching by email, make it brief and to the point. If you’ve done your homework, you should know how to frame your story to pique the journalist’s interest. Attachments should not be sent, unless asked. State the purpose of the email in the subject line, and follow up in a few days.

 

 

 

Build relationships with journalists and bloggers on social media

Build relationships with journalists and bloggers on social media

Social Media

What better way to discover a journalist’s interests than to visit their pages on social media? Research is always the first step in preparing to write a pitch, and social media provides the perfect platform for gaining the insights you need to find the right journalist to cover your story. Social media is also a good way to create relationships with journalists. Follow journalists who cover your clients’ industries, and develop a rapport with them. Don’t be pushy, and don’t turn their accounts into spam email boxes.

 

 

 

 

Pitching is just one tool PR professionals use to generate awareness, but it’s far from the only tool in the box. Technology has made it easier to send pitches, and response times are quicker than ever, but the same rules of pitching apply: Research, target, write, and cross your fingers.

 

Do you think pitching is dead? How have you adjusted your pitching strategy for digital media? Leave your thoughts in the comments section, or tweet me @nataliepetitto.