Pitching to Journalists — 5 Social Media Tactics That Help
We know how difficult it is to grab the attention of journalists in an email, especially with all the spam going around. Journalists are inundated with bad pitches all day long, making it tougher than ever to get the attention of reporters when you have important and relevant information for them.
By studying tweets from reporters for over two years, our team at Muck Rack gained critical insight into how journalists communicate and how best to engage them. To improve your email pitches, it is important to write attention-grabbing email subjects, keep emails short, and integrate content that journalists are sharing on social media.
Here are a few ways you can use social media to improve your email pitches to journalists:
Write your email subject as if you were writing a tweet:
Journalists’ tweets tend to sound like headlines. In many cases, they’re actually sharing headlines. Instead of writing email subjects as headers, write them as headlines, or in other words, as if you were tweeting the journalist.
Uncover journalists’ social bylines before you send your emails:
Look at journalists’ social media accounts to learn as much as you can about them. This will help you develop a better pitch and learn how best to contact them. This may also help you understand why you’re not hearing back from a particular journalist. Oftentimes you’ll find that a journalist who regularly tweets might not have tweeted in a few days, might be tweeting from a vacation, or might be in a foreign country covering a big story and won’t have time for email.
Make your email relevant by referencing information from social media:
Make sure journalists know that you’re listening to them on Twitter and other social media. Before emailing a journalist, show them you’re listening by referencing something they recently posted publicly on social media. Be careful not to be too intrusive. Instead, comment that you read an article that they linked to or that you agree with one of their recent tweets.
Include your social media information in your email signature:
Give journalists the opportunity to connect with you on your social media profiles. This will give them a chance to learn more about what you do and what your expertise is. If they end up following you, you’ll be able to share information with them more easily in the future.
Instead of including an extremely long press release, include a suggested tweet:
Journalists don’t always need to read an entire press release. Often, they only need snippets of information from the release. Instead of including a press release in the body of your email, include a suggested tweet that they can share with their followers. The journalist might not want to write an entire story about your news item, but if you give them an easy way to tweet about it, that might have as big of an impact as if they had.
Feel free to contact Muck Rack if you want more advice on writing effective email pitches to journalists