Posts tagged 'journalists' | Catapult Public Relations
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March 12, 2013
When trying to start a new relationship with a reporter or editor, commit to the long-haul and not just the short-term outcome. Timing is everything when trying to secure a story. Even though the person in question may be a perfect fit for a story idea, they may not have the resources available to pursue it. On the flip-side, some people may not be a good fit for your story topic, but if you develop a relationship and come to a mutual understanding with them, down the road they may surprise you and want to write about the company or product you are promoting.
The key takeaway here is to always treat people with respect and courtesy and be helpful in your approach – no matter what the short-term outcome is for your pitch. If you can get to a point where you spend more time getting to know someone rather than actually pitching them a story, chances are good they will want to work with you in the future. People want to help other people; you just have to know how to help them first.
June 8, 2012
Familiarizing yourself with reporters you correspond with can make a difference in the level of attention they give to your story ideas. Read their publications and articles. Knowing the publication well enough to suggest a specific section for your story will increase your chances of coverage.
February 17, 2010
Always call back the press promptly. even if you cannot answer their question immediately. Let them know you will try to find the needed information or contact. By responding quickly and respecting deadlines, you will become a reliable source and increase the likelihood that a story will run.
August 10, 2009
Give reporters a clear story idea that you know their readers (and editor) will like. Think of yourself as their editor before you pitch them and you’ll stand a greater chance of getting your idea accepted.
July 7, 2009
The proliferation of computer viruses and worms has made everyone leery of opening email attachments, even if the message is from someone they know. Some magazines have installed software that automatically removes attachments before forwarding the message to the intended recipient, but more often than not the entire email will simply be deleted. What that means for PR professionals is that they should always paste their releases in the body of their emails when sending them out to reporters. If there’s an image to go with the release, let them know that artwork is available upon request.
June 3, 2009
Don’t assume that reporters (or even analysts) will know and understand basic facts about your industry, company or product/service. Oftentimes, they know less about the topic at hand than you think! It’s good practice to always “start at the beginning” by providing a quick snapshot of your company and product overview while incorporating your key positioning messages throughout the discussion. Better to error on the side of repeating information they may know (in which case, they’ll tell you) versus assuming they understand. It can make the difference not only in the coverage results you get, but also help to position you as a potential source they can call on in the future.
August 15, 2008
Many company execs make the mistake of saying “We don’t have any competitors.” If you don’t have any competitors you either aren’t being honest or you don’t have a market for your product. The willingness to identify who your competitors are gives you credibility and builds trust.
July 30, 2008
First, recognize that people want to know about your accomplishments. Second, understand that getting the word out about your recognition helps to build your credibility.
June 13, 2008
Journalists and analysts alike have limited patience with news releases and pitches that are filled with jargon and outlandish claims. Some journalists even use a filter to detect and weed out releases that have too many buzzwords. To keep your release from being zapped, here are some words to avoid: end-to-end, customer-centric, nimble, robust, Web-centric, leading edge, revolutionary, state of the art, future proof and mission critical. The best advice? Try and write like a journalist. Use plain English to describe your product or service and the benefits it provides. Editors appreciate this approach and are much more likely to use your release when it’s written in a straightforward fashion.
May 13, 2008
Preparation is key to any successful presentation or sales call. When it comes to PR, media training is an essential tool to prepare executives and other employees to handle press calls, briefings or tours. A PR pro will develop messaging topics and potential questions that may be asked during a briefing to increase the likelihood that a positive, “on-message” story will appear. It also can help prevent executives from being caught off-guard by probing questions a determined reporter might ask. Media training, even for the most seasoned executives, can help ensure that a polished, complete story is presented to the press.