Crafting Your Pitch For The Media
The heart of media relations really comes down to the pitch. This is so important because the success of your pitch will determine whether you gain access to reporters and whether you or your client will get the chance to be featured.
There really is an art to pitching. The pitches that get noticed include what reporters are looking for.
These pitches are concise, interesting and to the point.
Below are a few secrets to pitching that will elevate the chances of you getting noticed.
One secret to getting your pitch to stand out to a media personality is to personalize your pitch. Most of us have probably received an email that simply says Hello in the greeting. Now, unless this is a super close friend, you probably know this email is coming from someone that doesn’t even know your name. You probably have your finger on the delete button before you even read past the first two sentences.
However, if you receive an email that has your name in the greeting, you’ll probably give the message a double-take, because clearly, they know your name. Which means they’ve spent a little time researching who they are emailing.
This same principle can be applied when reaching out to someone in the media. Personalizing your message will go a long way.
For example, when you are writing your pitch, start by mentioning a previous story the reporter has covered. This can be a great way to show that you know who they are.
You can say something like, Hey! I saw your previous story on the news and I love what you did when you talked about that issue.
All it takes is just one or two sentences. And doing this shows that you are personalizing your pitch to them. Which every reporter will appreciate and give more attention to.
We recommend the e-course “Launch Your Product To The Press” to learn more about creating your messaging and building your media contact list.
2. Outline The Story
When crafting your pitch for the media, it is important to outline the story for them. This means showing through your pitch that you have thought through the different needs the media personality will need in order to use your story.
A few things to consider:
- Making sure the characters within your pitch have their stories prepared.
- Having an expert ready to speak.
- Getting any collateral such as interview snippets or graphics that go along with your pitch at the ready.
This will take a bit of leg work on your part but it will boost your chances of the pitch being successful if you can help the reporters imagine what the story will look like.
For example, if you are pitching a story about a new initiative that can help transform people’s lives – finding someone who can actually talk about their transformative experience would really bring the story to life.
Or, if you have developed a new healthcare app that can streamline services and can save people time. It would be fantastic to have someone who can personally share their experience of using the app and how it’s affected their life.
Reporters are always looking for characters to tell the story through.
So having someone ready to do that will give you a huge leg up.
You can also include in your pitch that you have an expert ready to share their perspective and give content. This can be the CEO, the VP of product or anyone who you think can speak on behalf of the organization. Mentioning you have this person ready to go in your pitch shows that you have done some of the leg work and they will definitely appreciate that.
If you aren’t sure how to outline a story, or maybe aren’t sure where to start. Our premier 1 on 1 communications consulting is here to help! This exclusive access will help you craft your pitch to the media with all of the insider tips.
3. Keep Your Message Short
Another thing to keep in mind as you are crafting your pitch is to keep it short. The shorter your pitch is the more likely it will get noticed. There is huge value in sending out a press release. However, it is not always the most effective in getting noticed.
As a former reporter myself, I gave a lot more attention to emails that were about 5-6 sentences long and got right to the point.
A few things to keep in mind as you craft your pitch to ensure that it is short and to the point:
- Don’t overload with details – Yes, you want to include interesting and compelling information about your story – but anything more will most likely not get read.
- Keep the personalization succinct – Personalization is important, but you don’t need to do a commentary on their commentary. Remember, acknowledging that you know who they are and a current story is enough.
- Use Bullet Points – To cut down on sentences, you can even use bullet points to outline your pitch. This way the media personality can read your pitch quickly and immediately get all of your information in one look over.
The key to keeping your pitch short is making sure it still includes all of the important information! In our LinkedIn Learning e-course, Media Relations Foundations, you will learn important tips on crafting your pitch for the media as well as how to get your brand recognition by leveraging the media.
Do you want to learn how to pitch your story to the media? Join our private communications group and level up with our expert guidance.
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