Updated: Jul 9
You may have the best intentions when reaching out to journalists with news about your company, but common blunders can deter you from getting responses.
As a former journalist, I can tell you that these three phrases do more harm than good — here's what to write instead.
1. "Please send me feedback at your earliest convenience."
Journalists are always rushing to meet deadlines, develop ideas for pitch meetings, and edit pieces. The last thing they want is to be given another task from someone they don't even work for.
Instead, try asking a straightforward question such as, "Could these ideas be a fit for your upcoming issue?" or "Would you like me to connect you with one of our experts for their insight on this topic?"
I always prefer to finish a pitch with: "We're here to help!" The best PR experts know that if they help journalists get the sources and quotes they need (rather than pushing an agenda that doesn't fit what the journalist is working on), their clients will be successful.
2. "Would you be interested in featuring my company?"
Remember: This isn't about the journalist doing you a favor. It's about meeting their needs and their audience's needs.
No matter how many PR pitch tips you follow, a journalist can't simply include a source to be nice or make your job easier, so don't take it personally if it doesn't happen. The source has to meet certain criteria and truly be beneficial for the outlet's target audience.
There's a saying that a journalist's only boss is the public. Everything a journalist does is supposed to serve the readers first — not their own interests, not their manager's interests, and not your interests.
3. "I saw your recent article about glassware. Would you like to consider my company for a glassware article?"
Practically every pitch a journalist receives starts with this line. While it's fine to reference a journalist's recent work if you genuinely came across it, keep two things in mind:
1) It often comes off as forced or insincere, since journalists can typically tell if you simply Googled stories by them (also, many of those digital stories are years old and were simply updated/reposted by the publication as part of an SEO update).
2) If they did recently write an article about something that relates to your company, they're more than likely not going to write the same article again — or update the existing one with new products right away.
Rather than suggest they write about the same topic and include your company, brainstorm a fresh new angle that incorporates your product and let the journalist know that you're on standby should they ever need future product recommendations or expertise on the topic.
Of course, when you work with a public relations and social media company like Kloss Creatives, we’ll take care of crafting effective pitching for you. Book your discovery call with CEO and former journalist Kelsey Kloss here.