If You Want Your International Media Pitch to Get Coverage, Include These Elements
As a former journalist, I can tell you that reporters are always busy, often covering multiple subjects, and - unless you’re a global juggernaut like Apple or Samsung - they most likely do not care that your company just launched its latest product or service. This means there are certain elements that need to be in your pitch to ensure its successful reception and prove it worthy of a reporter’s time and publication.
This is especially true when engaging with international media outlets if you want to guarantee a successful media campaign crosses borders. In addition to the basics (keep it short, pitch the right journalist, don’t oversell), keep the below elements in mind when you formulate your international media pitch:
• Pitch a Relevant Story. If you only adopt one suggestion—make it this one. Don't pitch topics. Pitch stories with a local angle/relevance. Your content should clearly relate to the culture and region you are pitching to. It is very important to research the issues that are garnering the most local press. Then make your ‘news’ relevant in as many instances as you can. Remember that different countries or cities have different issues trying to be solved with industry best practices, products, services or new technologies.
• Check Social Media-First. Traditional media still matters, but today news often follows trends set via social media. Don’t believe me? Bloomberg’s Twitter handle @Brexit garnered 24.5k followers; @realDonaldTrump stands at 24.6k. See what your journalists or media outlets are saying via their Twitter handle, read topical news Tweets and incorporate these conversations into your personalized pitch.
• Yes, Personalize It. This is especially true for international outlets. Most journalists can tell from the first glance that you just sent a mass email pitch. The “spray and pray” approach as some dub it—mass e-mailing the same pitch to a long list of reporters and editors—does not work.
• Communicate Like a Local. When personalizing your pitch to global journalists, keep in mind vocabulary, spelling and cultural distinctions. Language and dialect play a big factor and misinterpretation can cost you coverage. It is important to note that this goes beyond different word meanings, such as “chips” in the United Kingdom meaning “fries”. For example, if your pitch is discussing a ‘quality’ product or service, the word ‘quality’ carries different interpretations—in China, it refers to ‘status’; in Korea, it means ‘brand new’.
• Include Relevant Data, Facts. Pitches that provide cited facts or list tips help journalists formulate story angles. The more information you can provide journalists—especially those abroad whom may not be as intimately familiar with your pitch topic or sector—the more likely your pitch will resonate above others
• No Attachments. Many media outlets, especially in developing regions, have inferior bandwidth connections. Sending unsolicited high-res images or attachments can cause email accounts to stall or crash, ruining a journalist’s day and your relationship.
Need help? We can guide you through every step to make your campaign successful. Contact us: email@example.com
By Nick Mitsis, Senior Consultant