In the public relations industry, connections and relationships with the media are key.
Just think about it—if you were an editor tasked with choosing between two products for an upcoming story, would you choose to keep the item from the person who is unresponsive and unreliable, or would you choose to keep the item from the person who you know will not only be responsive and concise in providing you with all necessary information, but continue to stay in touch with items they know you would be interested in. To all of us at Avalon Communications, the answer is clear.
We know that doing our due diligence when it comes to pitching is a must, and enjoy creating and maintaining positive relationships with the media. A few of our team members were able to attend a media event this past week in New York City, where they were able to meet and discuss with many of the top editors and producers, and found that although most the conversations with these editors and producers has been via email or phone, that the Avalon name was well-received. It is always nice to put a face to the name of someone we have been in constant contact with, and this event was no exception.
For those of you wondering where to start when it comes to relationships with the media, we have outlined a few pointers below.
Do your research. There is nothing worse than an editor receiving a pitch for something they do not cover. Do your research and be sure you are connecting with them regrading a topic of their interest. Wasting their time is not a great way to start a positive relationship.
Be friendly. This may come as a surprise, but your product or service may not always be a perfect fit for a story an editor or producer is working on. Take the constructive criticism under consideration, and be courteous—they may still keep your pitch in mind for future consideration.
Say thank you. The process for placing a product in a story can be a grueling task. Editors inboxes are constantly being flooded with emails pitching a product that may or may not be very similar to yours. In the event they do end up using your product, please follow up with a thank you email (or take it one step further and send a card). This will help your positive relationship grow, and show the editor that their hard work did not go unnoticed.
Do you have any tips for connecting with the media? Comment below!