Pitching Via Social Media (and email)
Everyone is on social media these days, including journalists and influencers. How do we use this to our advantage for pitching clients and partnerships? Last week at the Vocus Demand Success Conference, Gene Marks, Michelle Jaconi, Elyse Dupré, Breeanna Straessle took to the Pitching Journalists in the Social Media Era to explain some rules social media pitching. Here are some key takeaways!
- Respect the method by which journalists like to be pitched
- Before sending a pitch, by any medium, take an extra 30 minutes to research your target. If you can connect to them in their way or with a commonality, you’ll get their attention. According to Michelle Jaconi, “Your way in is standing out.”
- “If you can come up with a headline for me, you’re getting my attention,” Gene Marks said explaining that your headline or tweet really needs to tell the full story succinctly.
- Be conversational – if you’ve seen a recent tweet related to what you are pitching, use that as a means to begin a conversation about what you are pitching but ONLY if it is relevant
- Check their feed to make sure they would be interested in what you are pitching.
Even with all of these great social media pitching tips, the panelist couldn’t stress enough how they still like to be pitched via email and other methods. They offered some insight and tips.
- Email is searchable – though a pitch may not be used immediately, it could be used as a source. Sometimes, the journalist will search their box for something relevant to what they are currently working on.
- Sometimes the timing isn’t right, don’t be shy to re-email a pitch as there could be several reasons as to why it wasn’t picked up that have nothing to do with you.
- Having at least one good relationship with someone at a news organization can help get you connected
- Know the assignment desk people. They can tell you who covers what and connect you easily.
- Be personal – know that they’d previously written or some interests they may have and connect them to your pitch.
While social media is a great method for pitching, the overall tone of the conversation made it seem that email was the preferred method. However you decide to pitch your story, be sure to use the tips listed above.