Reuters editor’s take on pitching now

Yesterday I appeared on a PR News webinar alongside a Reuters business editor who has a great attitude about working with PR people.

She’s Lauren Young, and I asked her why she was making time to be part of an event that takes her away from her editorial duties. She said that helping PR people do their jobs better, in turn, helps all her colleagues at Reuters.

What a refreshing attitude. Here are some of my takeaways from Lauren’s portion of the program:

Real people

Journalists are always looking for “real people,” especially on the front end of any new development. Helping them get new “pipelines into sourcing” is a great way to prove useful.

COVID fatigue?

We’re not there yet, but Lauren anticipates an opening for “fun and light” material coming soon, as everyone – including journalists – needs to decompress.

Time for a “check in”

Lauren talked about colleagues with young children juggling homeschooling and work, as well as other demands. She mentioned they are exploring time-shifting schedules to allow for that. That prompted her to suggest that you as a PR person send a gentle email “checking in,” asking how your journalist contacts are doing and how their work has been affected. She said that human touch would be much appreciated.

As for my segment of the webinar, I shared my evolving framework for pitching media during this weird time. It’s always a bit dicey encouraging people to pitch more when you’re following a battle-weary editor on the presentation lineup, but Lauren was very gracious in supporting my message.

You can read the recommendations on this guest post that went up yesterday on Spin Sucks.

This article was originally published on April 29, 2020

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