The Muck Rack Blog gathers them, I break them down.
I’m not being sarcastic: Journalists don’t like it when you try to be empathetic
Today's PR pitches we never got to the third line of:
"Good afternoon Michael,
We hope you're having a fantastic week!"
— Michael Hiltzik (@hiltzikm) November 5, 2020
The best PR pitch emails start like this one:
"Hi Chris –
Know it has been a crazy week."
— Chris Teale (@chris_teale) November 6, 2020
You write pitches like this because you’re trying to be real and acknowledge the journalist’s humanity. But you can actually help them more by just getting to the point. I know this goes against everything in most PR people’s personalities, but trust the tweets – commenting on “the week” or “the day” like you would to a stranger on an elevator just rubs most journos the wrong way.
If a surprise happened and there wasn’t a camera to record it, it didn’t happen
Really bad PR pitch: Hey, we have this great story. We surprised this person with this really awesome gift. It happened yesterday, are you interested in doing something on the surprise today?
— Darren (@NewsDarren) November 11, 2020
I see both sides on this one. Darren knows that capturing a “reveal” makes good TV, and after the emotions are out of the bag, most of the juice of the story is gone. But in most cases, the PR pros get brought in too late to do the advance work to line up coverage of the actual moment. This happened to one of my clients this month. But credit the CMO for fixing his mistake – he gave them more money to recreate the surprise gift in concert with a national exclusive, and it’s going to happen next month.
The obligatory rants about pitching on or around an election
The audacity of any PR pitch emails today.
— Lauren Peikoff (@laurenpeikoff) November 4, 2020
Received a PR pitch about 'Trolls: Trollstopia.' READ THE ROOM!! pic.twitter.com/rv3rClxWO5
— Preston Burt (@squaredstiff) November 5, 2020
I almost didn’t even include these because it’s so obvious. But now you have some evidence to show your bosses in 2022 that Election Day is a bad day to pitch.
Angles that the reporters found remarkable for the wrong reasons
Most often, journalist tweets comment on the process of media pitching, rather than the specific story suggestions themselves. This month was an exception. Most are in fact ridiculous, but a couple of these seem like decent angles to me – probably mistargeted.
Quite the PR pitch today pic.twitter.com/5dPssc5m1p
— Tim Boyum (@TimBoyumTV) November 5, 2020
PR pitch in my inbox that is probably the weirdest post-election take: "When a cultural icon such as Kanye West speaks, people listen. His voice is listened to by millions and a tsunami may follow."
— Bryan Lowry (@BryanLowry3) November 6, 2020
I got an email PR pitch for sports betting site: "At this point, Donald Trump has a much better chance of getting divorced than winning the election, at least according to the oddsmakers."
— (((Steve Chapman))) (@SteveChapman13) November 6, 2020
PR Pitch o' the Day:
"What wealth-proliferating personal finance play does King Farouk of Egypt, Academy Award-winning actress Nicole Kidman and NBA all-time leading scorer Kareem Abdul-Jabbar have in common?"
— George Mannes (@dogbitesmannes) November 6, 2020
PR pitches today have been intense:
"Study: Cars that Depreciate the Least in Macon"
"DISNEY PRINCESS X RUTHIE DAVIS LAUNCHES CINDERELLA SHOE"
"Brick and Mortar Sales in Georgia are on the Rise"
"Pandemic's impact on our weight – 19,903 person global survey"
— Caleb Slinkard (@CalebSlinkard) November 9, 2020
i get the wackiest pr pitches that are so out of my lane. today: "This Thanksgiving, Don’t Let Pandemic Worries and Holiday Woes Become a Recipe for Cracked Teeth" !?!
— Kerry Dolan (@KerryDolan) November 16, 2020
Actual PR pitch I just received: "Popular Insta and TikTok Dog Influencer: 6 Tips to Become a Successful Social Media Pet Influencer"
Me: Thanks for the tips, but my dog can't read.
— James Zahn – The Rock Father™ (@therockfather) November 17, 2020
This article was originally published on November 24, 2020
(I’ll also send you other weekly tips)