In many ways, public relations is all about relationship building. As Valentine’s Day approaches, let’s look at the ways we can sweeten our connections with journalists and make our outreach more lovable through the use of conversation hearts.
Like any relationship, the rapport between reporters and PR professionals is built on respect. This means taking note of and respecting deadlines, preferred methods of contact and writing styles prior to connecting.
Charming conversation can help bring a story pitch to life, but get to the heart of the matter with reporters by being concise and direct about what you are offering, e.g., an expert resource, exclusive news, a feature story idea.
This might seem like a given, but know your material. When pitching, it is imperative to be highly familiar with the subject area, so you can field reporter questions accurately and quickly.
If reporters are amenable to receiving phone follow-ups, connect briefly with a call but do not pester.
Follow reporters on Twitter, so that you can track areas of interest, recent articles and then engage with them better via phone and email.
Cheer Me On
When a story publishes, be supportive by sending the reporter an email or tweet to acknowledge the article and thank them for including you or your client as a resource.
Continue to foster reporter relationships by letting them know when you or your client can be an expert source for a particular topic. Reporters can keep this detail on file and connect with you when the time is right.