Chapter 6

March 3, 2010 hkbarnes

While reading chapter 6 in Public Relations Writing and Media Techniques by Dennis L. Wilcox, I learned new information about pitching stories.  The biggest thing I learned was you can prepare ahead of time, but if you don’t have a successful pitch, all your hard work could be pointless.  Do your homework on the publication or person you are trying to pitch to.  CREATIVITY IS KEY!! (Usually)

There was a whole section in the chapter dedicated to pitching towards bloggers specifically.  According to the text, bloggers will post negative criticism and feedback about a pitch if they don’t like it or think it’s up to par.  Certain bloggers have a large follow and a major influence on public opinion.  Kevin Dugan wrote an entire blog dedicated to blog pitching  . . .

* Read the bloggers recent post to gain insight about their interests and opinions.

* Make sure you are not pitching them something they have already blogged about.  Or be able to give it a fresh spin or add to it.

* Subscribe to the blog’s RSS feed in order to follow the blog easily.

* Comment on other posts.  This will build a relationship with the blogger prior to making a pitch.

* Find out how the blogger wants to be pitched by finding the information on the homepage or through the links.

* Find a way to introduce yourself to the blogger that does not relate to the pitch, example-via email.

There are several key points to remember when preparing the actual written pitch.

The first is: Be brief.  Make sure the pitch is does not take over the whole computer screen

Second: Write with clean, sharp sentences.  Get to the point.  The spelling should be perfect.  Do not give journalists any little reason not to read the pitch.

Third:  Have an enticing lead.  Do not be boring.  If your lead is boring they are going to the think your idea is and stop reading there.

When sending your pitch via email, you have to plan your subject line carefully.  It goes back to doing your homework.  Know the interests or latest activities of the person or company you are sending the pitch to.   Be very creative or be very informative.

Melvin Helitzer is quoted in the text saying a good pitch should have six components.

* Enough facts to support a full story

* An angle of interest to the readers of that specific publication

* The possibility of alternative angles

* Offer to supply or help secure all needed stats, quotes, interviews with credible sources, arrangements for photos ect.

* An indication of authority and credibility

* Offer to call the editor soon to get a decision

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Entry Filed under: PRCA 3330-reading notes,Uncategorized

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