Journalists receive hundreds of media pitches every day, and most of them are deleted without hesitation. Securing media coverage is not as easy as distributing a generic news release to every reporter within a 50-mile radius. Instead, it’s becoming increasingly important to take the time to send each reporter a personalized, tailored media pitch that is unique, relevant and credible.
Below are three tips for crafting an effective media pitch for your brand:
1. Develop a Targeted Media List
Begin by developing a list of the media outlets that you’ll be pitching, based on key information such as who your target audiences are, how they prefer to consume content and where to best reach them. Once you’ve tracked down the appropriate contacts at each media outlet, it’s time to build out your media list. Using media database tools like Cision or Meltwater can help to streamline this process. Your media list should only include contacts who may be compelled to cover your story.
Next, do a little research on each reporter from your media list. Check out recent stories they’ve published, noting any that are of similar interest. Get to know their target audiences and how your story would be valuable to them. The idea is to learn enough about their work to offer a clearly stated story angle they can pursue.
2. Craft a Compelling Media Pitch
Your subject line is a crucial part of the media pitching process. It’s how a reporter decides whether to read your email or keep scrolling. Consider what your story can offer, such as a new audience or increased blog traffic. A best practice is to keep it clear, concise and compelling enough to quickly grab their attention. Avoid any “salesy” or click-bait language.
It may be helpful to mention the journalist’s previous work if it aligns with your story. Doing so conveys your interest. Provide a clear description of the story you’re pitching, and don’t forget to include a call to action. Giving direction is helpful because it’s less work for the journalist, and they’ll be more likely to take action.
Kick things up another notch by incorporating some of these elements into your media pitch email:
- Case Studies
- Blog posts
3. Use a Media Pitch Email Template
If you’re new to media relations, it can be helpful to reference a media pitch email template. For instance, a media pitch for a new product launch might look something like this:
Subject Line: [Brief description of pitch and why media contact should care]
Hi [first name]:
I saw your recent story on [similar topic/brand] and wanted to introduce you to [organization], which [high-level background on organization].
We just released our new, a [brief description of the product], and would love to send over a sample for you to try out.
I think your readers would be interested in a story on [2-3 story ideas with product, catered to specific media contact].
Be sure to keep your media pitch short, sweet and to the point. Don’t bog down your subject line with click-bait language—it won’t work. Be sure to tell reporters why your story matters to their readers and provide specific angles they could take with your story. Don’t forget to end with a clear call to action.