06/06/13

DLC on PR Secrets to Broadcast

Aimee Yoon

Aimee Yoon

With her strategic thinking and keen media savvy, Aimee is a media relations guru and knows how to craft the angles reporters really want. Prior to co-founding Dotted Line Communications, Aimee sharpened her skills at InterActive Public Relations, a division of Porter Novelli International, Miller […]

Read Aimee Yoon's Bio

Yesterday’s Daily ‘Dog post by Allie Tedone, of Fusion PR, called “PR Secrets of Breaking into Broadcast: Best Days, Best Hooks and Best Practices for Scoring ‘Air Time’,” really resonated with me and was a good reminder of all the great tips we learn over the years. So often we put our heads down, nose to the grindstone, and forget how helpful basic best practices can be in our hectic every day lives filled with media pitches, press releases, and deadlines upon deadlines.

One major takeaway I had from the list is that Monday and Tuesday are the best days to pitch broadcast. So often I feel like people are just trying to ready themselves for the week on Monday, so it’s a great tip to hit the ground running with pitching and have all the prep done on Friday so you can get going. I also agreed that assignment desks are always a good bet to start with when you don’t have a direct contact at an outlet; however, since reporters rotate around who is sitting on the assignment desk at any given time, it is hard to know who to stay on for follow up!

I shared Allie’s story with the rest of the DLC team and it turned out we all had a little something to add to Allie’s great list.

 

Days/Times for Pitching — I agree with Aimee, it’s always good to know when the people we are pitching are most hungry. Sunday night is going to be my new Monday morning!

Titles — My knee jerk reaction as a PR person is that high-level outlets need high-level titles. It’s interesting to hear that broadcasters eschew seniority in favor of a good chat.

— Darcy

 

Have something visual to pitch to television — Reporters/Producers are slammed and get hundreds of pitches everyday. Competition for airtime is fierce and talking heads are not visual. It’s important to craft the segment for the producer (they’ll appreciate it) and detail the visuals that the viewers will see. If you make it easy for a producer they will have confidence in your ability to provide quality segments for other clients.

— Emily

 

Google Hangouts — I definitely thought this was a great alternative to a landline – knowing mobile doesn’t quite work, this is a good backup that I wouldn’t have considered.

Day/Times — I also agree with Darcy and Aimee, but also want to add that it’s important to know when the producer’s pitch meetings are; you definitely want to get your ideas over prior to those weekly/daily meetings.

— Jen

 

Media training is important -– No matter how many times a spokesperson says, “Oh I’ve done this a hundred times,” it’s always valuable to take time before the interview to do mock interviews. Practice over Google Hangouts or Skype so you can see your spokesperson’s facial expression and give them feedback before the interview.

Accents are tough to work with on the radio — Trust this Boston gal; the accent over the phone is never easy. Before your client unleashes their spiel on the “softwa-ah” industry, remind them to practice and over enunciate the words. And speak slowly; there is nothing worse than someone who takes fast with a killer accent (take it from me!)

— Denise

 

Ditch the forbidden statement: “I just wanted to follow up on my e-mail to you.”  — That’s three seconds wasted when you can just call and give them your pitch. It’s a line media hear every day from PR people, so if you want to stand out, refrain from that “did you get my e-mail?” script.

Day/Times — I second Jen’s tip on knowing the producer’s pitch meetings. Prime them with your story and then follow up right before they go in to make sure that it’s on their list to talk about in the meeting! Top of mind right before that meeting is crucial!

— Stephanie

 

Have something visual to pitch to television — Agreed! I also think it’s worth including a link to your spokesperson’s past work. I also think this is a good reminder that with broadcast it’s always about painting the full sensory experience with your pitch, which not only includes mentioning visual elements for a segment but also including examples of your spokesperson’s past work so the producer knows they’re getting a polished professional that will appeal to their viewers.

— Jenny

 

Be sure to check out the list, and let us know if you have any tips or thoughts to add!