4 tips for optimizing your newsjacking opportunities

If you snooze, you lose. Have your virtual antennae up at all times, and cultivate a rapport with journalists so you can respond quickly—and with the ideal pitch—to breaking events.

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Attaching your organization or a company leader to a news story can grab media attention.

Reporters are always looking for insightful and credible sources to offer background information for pieces on the particular industry and topics they cover. A savvy PR pro knows how to connect their client with a reporter as a story unfolds to maximize coverage potential.

However, a poorly timed pitch will only irk the reporter, who might have been able to use your source a couple of hours prior, but now can only click “delete.”

Here are four rules for PR pros to live by:

1. Build a relationship first.

If you want to be a go-to source for a journalist, you have to develop a rapport, asking questions and tailoring your pitches accordingly. Learn their publishing schedule, what kinds of stories they cover and which expert source(s) might interest them.

Unfortunately, far too many PR pitches reek of laziness, and that can be damaging.

With the 24-hour news cycle and online publishing, getting your quote included in an article requires early pitching. Make sure your pitch provides everything a reporter might need, including your expert’s full name and a short bio. (Make it 25 words, tops; 10 words is even better.)

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