With a steady income of emails as lengthy as a longform feature, we media people can be a tough crowd sometimes, especially when you’re pitching your new business or idea. The thing is, it’s rarely just about your business itself – like any pitching process, it’s also the way you pitch that could make or break our response.
Sure, you’ve got a great idea, but do you have publishable pics to match? We get it, you’ve got a lot of media coverage, but have you had a little too much that we’ll need a new angle to make it work for us?
Here’s what we’re looking for if you’re trying to get us on board:
Make yourself known
Straight away, we like to know who we’re dealing with. Imagine opening your door to somebody who launches into a spiel about dish cloths before you’ve even got the 411 on who they are: door slamming is sure to ensue. Tell us who you are and where you’re from – it’s not always clear to us whether you’re a freelance writer who’s sitting on a great idea; a new founder ready for interviews; or from a PR firm with a great client, so it’s pretty important you do that as a rule, and do it straightaway.
(And that goes for your objectives too)
Like anyone who’s juggling a smartphone and an obsession with dachshunds, we’re time poor people. We don’t fancy trawling through unrelated content as much as you when you’ve been duped into a clickbait story, so let us know what you’re thinking right away. If you’re pitching your product, let’s hear it. If you want to write for us, let us know.
Is it urgent? Like, “product launching tomorrow” urgent? (We might not see this as actually urgent – just that we’ve been left off the list until now). If your pitch isn’t urgent, we’d suggest not putting “urgent” in your email subject line. If we spill our coffee over “urgent” and find out later that it isn’t, we might consider billing you for our wasted beverage with a, “Maybe next time!”
Attach relevant documents only
Attachments are exciting things, like little email packages. What’s inside, we wonder. If it’s kind of exactly what you’ve said in your email, we get sad and let down, like when we order shoes online and they finally arrive but don’t fit. Make your attachments relevant – and if you’re popping images in there (which we love, by the way) make them low-res for web, high-res for print. Also, options are good – snaps of your product as well as lifestyle images would be the dream. It saves us from having to chase you later down the line and much more likely to put it on our “to publish” list.
Spell out the “Why?”
Time-poor typers like us love a good dot point – try giving us the story angle and lowdown on your proposition in short, sharp sentences and we basically swoon. If we can skim your pitch and get the gist from a quick look, you’ve done your job. If we have to go hunting, there’s a good chance we’ll go hunting straight into a Pinterest page for weeknight dinners heavy on cheese. In short: don’t let us get distracted.