5 PR Pitching Mistakes to Avoid

Jul 1, 2016

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Milwaukee Public RelationsYou’ve got a great press release. You’ve got a great relationship with your reporters/journalists. You’ve got everything right. Or do you? There’s nothing quite so discouraging as having all the pieces of a perfect pitch together, but failing to deliver at the very end. To avoid a situation like that, read on for 5 PR pitching mistakes to avoid. Before you head out the door today for the long weekend, take a peek at these mistakes and make sure you don’t fall into their trap on Tuesday!

5 PR Pitching Mistakes to Avoid

Spelling mistakes.

Nothing says “I was in a hurry and just sent this off” than spelling and punctuation mistakes. Give yourself a fighting chance and do a quick proofread before hitting “send.”

Pitching everyone everywhere.

This is called “spam,” and it’s frowned upon. There’s two parts to this: sending the exact same pitch to multiple queries and sending the exact same pitch to everyone on every distribution list. Avoid both. You’ll be much more effective with a researched and targeted pitch to the publications and journalists who are relevant to your message.

Starting with a vague and rambling lead.

Work on your hook so that it does what it’s supposed to: hook your reader. A rambling tease is annoying to a journalist who has plenty of other emails to read. Get to the point and make sure the point is interesting

No specific angle.

Combine #3 with #4 for a press release unlikely to be read past the first paragraph. Make it easy on journalists by telling them why this content matters to their readers. Why is this news? Answer that question, make it up front and center in your release, and then send off your pitch. Oh, and make sure your contact information is handy, too. Otherwise, you can bet that you won’t be contacted.

Overused verbiage.

Go through your release before pitching it and weed out “fluff” words. You are likely not the “best in class,” the “unique,” or the “first ever,” so don’t use them. Also avoid “just in time for,” “once in a lifetime opportunity,” and other filler words. Think in terms of a journalist: report the facts and only the facts.

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Have a Happy Fourth of July! We’ll see you back here next week. Stay safe.