Three considerations for perfecting your pitch

Throughout the year, media-monitoring services release annual reports regarding the state of journalism, offering an opportunity to hear directly from journalists about their industry, job requirements and, most important of all, preferences when working with PR professionals.

Muck Rack recently shared their 2022 State of Journalism Report, which includes some interesting and important statics. I’ve pulled out three major takeaways that PR professionals should consider when executing media relations campaigns.

Make your story share-worthy.

PR professionals shouldn’t only be thinking about how to craft an interesting story, but also whether that story is worthy of being shared.

According to the Muck Rack “2022 State of Journalism Report,” 64% of journalists track how many times their stories are being shared on social media. So, what helps a story be share-worthy? A few top examples include trend jacking, which is considering how your story is impacted or shaped by a current trend, providing multimedia, including images or an infographic, and offering interesting data.

Virtual is here to stay (at least for now).

While some trade shows and press events are headed back to pre-pandemic schedules, this is your reminder that media don’t always need to be in-person to have meaningful connections with your brand. In the Muck Rack report, of the over 2,500 journalists surveyed, 34% of journalists said they are more likely to cover a virtual event and 46% of journalists said an event going virtual doesn’t affect their likelihood of covering it.

Think through ways to reach media where they are and how they want to connect, whether it’s sharing electronic assets during an in-person trade show, inviting media to a virtual presentation or setting up Zoom coffee check-ins with key executives. The more flexible your brand can be in this hybrid work culture, the more media you’ll be able to reach.

The early bird gets the worm.

One of the most important considerations when executing media relations campaigns is knowing when and how they want to be contacted. This year’s Muck Rack survey says that 94% of journalists prefer to be pitched via email and preferred to be pitched on a Monday. The earlier in the day and the week, the better chances you have of getting their attention. A few other tips include keeping your pitch brief (under 200 words) and conducting one follow-up email to your original pitch.

Make sure to use your 200 words wisely by providing the most important details, clearly stating what challenges your company or product addresses for their customers and explaining why the story is newsworthy.

Keep in mind journalists continue to be spread thin, covering an average of four beats, up from three beats just last year, meaning you have less time to get your story across. Tell your story to the most appropriate media contacts effectively by using brevity and helpful supporting materials.