I’m still in disbelief that I’ve spent a whole year at KPR-it feels like just yesterday that I stepped into our pink-walled office on the 6th floor and drafted my first pitch.
It was really hard to condense everything I’ve learned at this public relations agency into one blog post, but this is my attempt:
1. Pitches are not novels.
When I first tried my hand at pitching, I would draft these stilted, overly formal pitches that were filled with too much information. Like publicists, journalists don’t have time to waste-so my pitches were definitely headed straight to their junk mail. Thankfully, my amazing colleagues gave me great advice-write what you would want to read. I know that emails with huge blocks of text end up in my junk mail pretty much immediately, so I started to make my pitches short and easy-to-read. Now more of my pitches end up in journalists’ saved folders-not their junk folders!
2. It’s all in the details.
This tidbit is something that I’m still working on daily. As publicists, we have so much on our plate that it’s easy to let the little things like font sizes and spacing get away from us. But those small details can really take away from the hard work that we put in. No one will trust my expertise if I misspell a word in my press release or send an update with two different fonts! I’ve learned to slow down and proofread like crazy before I ever hit the “Send” button.
3. Read everything.
Before I came to KPR, I read quite a bit of online news. However, I was usually focusing my attention on only a few sources (one of which was Buzzfeed’s “Animals” page). I learned that to really thrive in public relations, I had to consume news from all sources and on all types of issues. Sometimes the best pitch ideas I’ve come up with have been from seemingly random articles I’ve read in local print newspapers. You never know when inspiration and great pitch angles will come to you, so the best way to find them is to read.