A Really Bad Pitch!

24 03 2009

While catching up on my Google Reader I came across a post on the Bad Pitch Blog. The blog post described the worst pitch I have ever read in my life. I couldn’t believe this really happened. Basically the NY Post newspaper received an email promoting a particular dermatologist and their news peg was the death of a real estate reporter at the NY Post. The email even stated that the reporter ignored signs of melanoma and could have prevented his death if he would have seen a dermatologist! I couldn’t believe that this particular PR person used DEATH AS A NEWS PEG! As if this wasn’t bad enough, the pitch email was sent only a few hours after the news paper staff returned from their colleague’s funeral. This was a huge PR mistake and the pitch obviously failed miserably. Note to PR practitioners: Death is too risky of a subject to use as a news peg. I encourage you all to read the post and the pitch letter.

Pitch Letters

1 03 2009

In our PR class we discussed pitch letters and how to pitch to journalists and bloggers. I came across a post on the Bad Pitch Blog called Five Crucial Tips for the Perfect Pitch Letter. This blog post refers to pitch letters as the holy grail. They are the one of the best tools that PR practitioners have in their tool box, but most often, they are used ineffectively. The following 5 tips were given:

  1. Hit it with your best shot: have a very good angle for your story and say something to get the reader’s interest.
  2. Make it personal: make sure it relates to the journalist’s beat.
  3. It’s all about the method: email pitch letters and snail mail pitch letters are very different. Email pitch letters have less space; make it quick and to the point. Snail mail pitches give you a whole page if you can keep the journalist interested enough to make it to the end of your letter.
  4. Don’t rush the letter: make all your points clearly and keep it interesting.
  5. Proofread! This is the most important tip. Don’t make yourself look like an idiot. Get someone to edit your letter critically.

I really encourage my classmates and other PR professionals to read this post. It is very helpful!