Tuesday, June 23, 2020

Here’s How The Media Really Wants To Be Pitched

Wretched American News Media | The Mind's Eye - Musings of Will ...

How does the news media really operate when it comes to determining what they cover, how, and why?

Well, first let’s state the obvious. Most media act in accordance with a few unwritten rules:

1.       Whatever ownership has outlined in its mission statement is what it will cover. Politics and business interests may play a role here.

2.       Every media outlet has to pay attention to what its readers-listeners-viewers-followers  want/expect – and craft stories that appeal to their interests.

3.       Every media outlet that charges for access to its content and/or has advertising will certainly craft its content to please subscribers and advertisers – and to appeal to its advertising demographics.

4.       The individual producer/writer/host/editor will have personal preferences, biases, or needs that will get fulfilled in their approach to covering the news.

In a recent study published by Muck Rack, an expensive media database, a survey show the habits, preferences, and needs of today’s media. Take a look:

·         93% said they prefer to be pitched via personalized e-mail, but only 21% are receptive to mass emails.

·         64% like to get pitches between 5 am and noon their time.

·         83% think 1-7 days is an ideal window to follow up on an email pitch, but 17% said wait longer than a week.

·         20% like to get pitches on Mondays, 10% on Tuesdays, and the rest of the days of the week were 4% or less each. 62% said they had no preference as to which date you pitch them.

·         64% prefer you do not call them.

·         84% of journalists preferred using email to maintain a professional relationship with publicists. The next closest: 25% like in-person; 25% like Twitter; 23% like Linked In; and 21% the phone.

·         61% of journalists prefer a pitch to be no longer than three paragraphs and nearly a third want a pitch to be no longer than three sentences!

·         75% of journalists are more likely to cover a story if it is offered as an exclusive.

·         Journalists reported that the number one factor that makes a story sharable is if it connects to a trending subject. Having images in stories was a close second.

The media says it goes here first to get its news:

·         60% online newspapers or magazines
·         22% Twitter
·         5%  print newspapers/magazines
·         3% broadcast cable news
·         3% radio
·         2% Facebook
·         1% podcasts

Pitches get rejected most often because of:

·         Lack of personalization           33%
·         Bad timing                               31%
·         Too long                                   18%
·         Confusing subject line             15%
·         Large attachments                    3%

These are general trends to take note of, but always customize your pitch to meet the needs of the specific media outlet and journalist that you reach out to. Follow-up and be persistent!


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Brian Feinblum’s insightful views, provocative opinions, and interesting ideas expressed in this terrific blog are his alone and not that of his employer or anyone else. You can – and should -- follow him on Twitter @theprexpert and email him at brianfeinblum@gmail.com. He feels much more important when discussed in the third-person. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog ©2020. Born and raised in Brooklyn, he now resides in Westchester. His writings are often featured in The Writer and IBPA’s Independent.  This was named one of the best book marketing blogs by Book Baby http://blog.bookbaby.com/2013/09/the-best-book-marketing-blogs and recognized by Feedspot in 2018 as one of the top book marketing blogs. Also named by WinningWriters.com as a "best resource.” He recently hosted a panel on book publicity for Book Expo 

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