is an important element of media relations strategy. But many still rely
on traditional form of sending in boring and lengthy press releases.
Why even bother pitching when
emailing and faxing in is so much easier?
Well, if you still have that
mindset, then it is time to change. I will share seven reasons why you
should pick up the phone and pitch your story.
1. Attract attention: The
media is often overloaded with so many invitations, press releases and
emails. By pitching, you automatically bring their attention to your
2. Communicate directly: By
pitching, you are communicating to the journalists and editors. This
will make them aware of your organization. Not only it will put a human
touch to your press release or invitation, it shows that you are taking
the initiative to contact them.
3. Stressing important
elements: When you pitch, you actually highlight the important
elements of your event directly, sometimes these are the same things
that would have been neglected by the busy eyes of a hurried journalist
4. Direct confirmation:
This is the best part. When you pitch, you will coax the media to cover
your event, you will know immediately whether they will be covering your
event or not. If yes, well done. If not, you can at least try different
5. Re-sell: Sometimes
a press release, invitation or story maybe rejected, by pitching you
allow an open discussion with the journalist or editors on how to
re-angle your story. This may just be a lucky break.
6. Learning: When
pitching, you actually learn what the media really wants. For example
“We do write these types of stories anymore” or “This is not what
we are looking for.” You immediately learn what the specific media’s
needs and wants are. The next time, you will not waste their time and yours.
7. Making contacts: Pitching
opens avenues for future contacts.
When you call and speak to a certain
journalist or editor, you are actually taking the first step of making a
Even if they say no, you can
always ask what types of stories they are looking for, how else can you
help them. Take the opportunity to make small conversations, ask their
personal phone numbers or better still ask them out for lunch.
Dhillon is a former broadcast journalist and a public
relations consultant. She is the founder of Intelectasia Consultancy,
a public relations agency in Malaysia. You can read more about her at www.intelectasia.com
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