At the recent PR Summit in San Francisco, the following four bloggers and I tried to answer that very question.
Here are 12 tips and arguments that came up during the discussion:
1. Keep it short and sweet. Far too many email pitches have endless copy. Ryan Singel was really impressed with a particular five-line pitch. It’s OK if you have more information. Just send it once the blogger expresses interest.
2. Avoid ALL CAPS, jargon, and the term “press release” in the subject line. All the bloggers said they delete any emails that have “press release” in the subject line. Plus they get annoyed with all caps and industry jargon.
3. Personal is best, but bloggers will accept mass-mailed requests. Bloggers definitely appreciate the personal approach where the PR rep knows the bloggers, what they cover, and what they’re interested in. Though they understand the problems with “spray and pray,” they are still receptive to mass-mailed requests, provided they’re on target.