As I’ve earned my undergraduate degree over the past four years, I’ve been fortunate to have a wide variety of internship experiences in the communications and public relations field. I’ve walked away from each with a valuable set of skills, and my time at Flackable has certainly been no exception. While I could list numerous aspects of the PR industry that I’ve been thrilled to learn about and put into practice since beginning here in January, the one that sticks out the most is what I’ve learned about writing pitches.
From how to research to who to pitch to, I certainly wouldn’t be able to craft pitches the way I now can without the opportunities Flackable has given me to gain real-world experience. Throughout my experience at Flackable, I have learned that there are three key factors to consider when crafting a successful pitch that lands my clients a spot in the media.
Determine The Scope Of Your Pitch
Ask yourself how broad the audience should be for this particular pitch. Should you focus it locally, regionally, or nationally? If you decide local, make sure to clearly show how your client ties into that area and why a local outlet should see value in their insight or expertise.
If you’re shooting for regional, I’ve found the best approach is a happy medium between tying into more specific things about the region while still keeping it broad enough that it’s applicable to a wide range of people. Show them that there’s a reason why your client is relevant to that particular region, but make sure it’s not too niche that the reporter decides they won’t be applicable to their entire area.
For national pitches, emphasize your client’s expertise and how it can apply to the masses. Even if their subject area is more specified, be clear about why they are capable of speaking to a national audience and why that audience will want to hear from them specifically when you’re reaching out to reporters or producers.
Know Who You Are Pitching, And Pitch Them To the Right Places
Are you pitching a CEO who has excellent insight but is camera shy? Then don’t land them a broadcast segment. Maybe you’ve got a great conversationalist but he or she doesn’t like formal interviews, search for relevant podcasts instead of newspapers. You won’t know where your client does or does not excel unless you know the person you are pitching and what they are most capable of.
Draw on their previous media placements for reference if you don’t know them personally and use those media placements to show whoever you are pitching to that they have made valuable contributions before. Once you know their preferred format (print, broadcast, or otherwise), you can tailor your pitches to that format, maximizing your chances to land it and ensuring that your client has a successful media placement.
Pitch To The Right Person
It may sound simple, but make sure you pitch to someone that can actually turn your pitch into a media hit for your client. If you have a financial services client, pitching them to a tech reporter wastes your time and theirs. It also shows them you didn’t do your research and could even risk your relationship with that publication or contact in the future when you actually do have a relevant pitch. When crafting your media list, do your homework and find a few solid contacts for your client and specific pitch, and make sure to tell them why your client is relevant to the industry or information they cover.
There isn’t one formula that adds up to a pitch landing your client a media hit every single time, but there are certainly plenty of variables that can sway your success. If there’s one thing I’ve learned about pitching in my time with Flackable, it’s to do your homework and treat every pitch as if it needs to be the best one you’ve written yet.
Emily Briselli is a Public Relations and Content Development Intern at Flackable, an award-winning public relations agency representing financial and professional services brands nationwide. To learn more about Flackable, please visit flackable.com.