Though you know a media relations misstep when you see it, good PR pitches are harder to define.
To get to the bottom of this, my team at Communications@Syracuse surveyed top PR agency pros for advice from those who work in the trenches.
Twenty-five public relations practitioners weighed in, each answering the question, “What is the most crucial element of a PR pitch?” Their answers contain several common themes, including the importance of personalization, relevance and timeliness.
1. Personalize it.
Jessica Klenk, a PR pro at Merritt Group, emphasizes the importance of personalization:
The secret weapon is the person sending it—their voice and their personality. The first thing reporters delete is a canned, generic pitch, so take the time to be authentic. Personalize your note and make sure it sounds like it came from an actual human.
Klenk’s co-worker, Julia McGavran, agreed. “It’s easy to become robotic and just copy and paste e-mails,” McGavran says, “but actually speaking to them like a human can really help break down the barriers.”
2. Ensure it’s relevant.