From what we have learned from our media interview assignment, some of the media members have had a hard time working with PR professionals.
In reading the article “What annoys technology journalists about PRs” by freelance journalist Stuart Dredge, he has shared the words from other reporters of what they did not like about working with PR professionals:
1. Not researching the target
“Anything that starts ‘Dear blogtitle’ – I really like your blog so could you cover something irrelevant for a client”
“When the PR has very little idea of what kinds of stories we cover”
– Reporters often get annoyed and frustrated when PR practitioners did not do enough research to know what beats do they cover before the phone pitch.
– What we should do instead: DO THE RESEARCH. Keep an up-to-date media list and build a relationship with the
2. Not following through
“The worst thing is when a PR doesn’t understand their own press release. Also, issuing release then quickly buggering off.”
“Ones who continually send shit your way and then never respond when you ask them a question. (i.e. throw-at-wall PR)”
– What we should do instead: Be responsive. Keep the media member updated with the latest information.
“”just calling to check…” a) “is it OK to send u press release” b) “did u get press release” c) did u do anything with that””
“Follow up emails to press releases. If I didn’t respond the first time I’m simply not interested.”
“Phone pitches. I rarely have time to listen, and my first instinct is always that I’m being sold a pup.”
– What we should do instead: Don’t be pushy. I remember Dr. Horn always told us that we will experience failure in 99% of our job. Don’t give up trying, but don’t be annoying. Do research to find out what will meet the journalist’s need and how can you make that connection. If they say no the first time, work harder before you try on the second time.
4. Picture not-so-perfect
“Couldn’t agree more. I get little PR but unsolicited email with >2Mb attachment = autoblock”
– What we should do instead: Don’t send a press release as an attachment. It is also annoying to attach big video/photo files in an e-mail. It is better to establish an online newsroom on your company’s website and provide links to videos and images for the reporters.
5. Lack of timeliness
“Lack of timeliness. If you say you’re going to do something by a certain date, then do so. I’m helping YOU sell YOUR stuff.”
– What we should do instead: This is pretty self-explanatory. Stay on top of your deadlines!
It is kind of depressing to know not many people will like our position as a PR, but at least now we know the areas that need improvements in PR professional’s approaches. And that is all for my last publicity blog. Good luck everyone with the finals!