A good pitch is a good pitch, and many of the tried and true methods PR professionals have relied on for decades still work. However, you have a matter of seconds to capture the attention of online journalists and bloggers these days, so you’ll need quick and crafty strategies that keep up with the velocity of digital information.
Don’t totally abandon your existing strategies, but try to keep these five things in mind when you are pitching a story to an online publication:
Does your topic make for a good viral headline? Ask yourself if you can see the story being spread across channels like Facebook and Twitter. If the answer is no, then chances are journalists and bloggers wont be interested.
Research is essential. You need to know whom you are pitching, what they cover and what their reach is. This is an old rule of thumb, but it is especially important in the highly fragmented world of digital media. The last thing you want to do is waste your time on a pitch that will either fall flat or reach the wrong audience.
Educating the writer is more important than ever. Many bloggers have become extremely influential over large audiences. Still, they may have limited knowledge of your particular topic, despite their interest in coverage.
Develop long-term relationships. This may take time because it requires social-media interactions, emailing and sometimes face-to-face networking. Online media is much more communal than print, so you need to establish yourself as a member of the digital community.
Use social media to follow up and engage journalists and bloggers. Again, think community, and consider that becoming part of the digital community requires a deep social media commitment. Retweeting a journalist today could lead to them featuring your pitch tomorrow.