Dear journalists: What PR pros want you to know

PR professionals don’t want to annoy journalists. It’s the last thing they want. A little open communication could prevent it from happening as often as it does.

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This article originally appeared in PR Daily in September 2015. If you’ve been in the media relations game long enough—on either side—you’ve seen many a blog, article, and social media post lamenting the mess-ups of PR professionals. There are different ones here and there, but most tend to center around incessant follow-ups, not understanding beats, mass emails and the dreaded follow-up phone call.

Don’t get me wrong, journalists. Those things are annoying, misguided, and a mark of poor, or no, research. So I assure you, I feel you. But I also assure you that for every off-base pitch or umpteenth follow-up you get, there are more carefully-crafted notes from PR pros trying very hard to make you happy. We read your media profiles, we catch up on months or even years of your articles, we make notes about your beats and interests in our media lists and we set ourselves reminders in our calendars to follow up a sane amount of times over a reasonable time frame.

I asked my conscientious colleagues at (W)right on Communications, some of whom have multiple decades of experience in the field, to share their top things they want journalists to know. Here’s what they had to say: Julie Wright, president:

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