Don’t do what many of your peers do—pitch all the livelong day and not interact with a reporter like he or she is a human being. Instead, focus on developing a relationship with your local journalists. You may be surprised at the results.
Here are 10 tips to help you get in their good graces.
1. Don’t pitch (at least not all the time). Pitching is obviously a necessary part of your job, but reserve it for the end of your conversation.
2. Reference their work. Want someone to feel important? Talk about what’s important to him or her. For journalists, it’s their past stories and columns. You don’t have to memorize every word, but rest assured a little reference to past work will make them smile—and remember your name.
3. Talk to them like humans. Reporters are very busy, so don’t flood their inboxes with inane banter. However, once in a while when you do talk to them, don’t just stick to business. Ask about their kid’s school play, or whether that big story they were working on panned out. And remember, no jargon.