5 Things PR People Do That Irk Journalists

While the earned media landscape is evolving, one thing remains clear: credible media coverage is a valuable component to any company’s communication effort. Fostering relationships with your key media so they know you as a trusted, reliable source of information goes long way in making … or breaking … your media relationships.

Let’s look at 5 things the irk journalists and hinder your chances of earned media coverage:

1. Mass email blasts with irrelevant pitches. Few things annoy journalists more than getting bombarded with generic press releases and story pitches that have nothing to do with their coverage areas. PR people who take the time to research each writer’s beat and tailor their outreach accordingly tend to get a much better response.

    2. Being unavailable for reporters’ follow-up needs: whether it’s listing a PR contact on the news release that isn’t available or a lack of access to executives and subject matter experts  for interviews. Journalists strive to get beyond the polished press releases and dig into the meat of the story … and often need the help from PR pros to get them access or information. Nothing irks reporters more than committing to write a story and not having the insight, information or images they need.

    3. Not respecting journalists’ deadlines. Magazines and newspapers operate on strict production schedules, and web outlets need to move fast to stay competitive. PR folks who fail to promptly respond to inquiries or provide requested assets in a timely manner can jeopardize important placements and frustrate time-pressed journalists.

    4. Asking to review the story before publication. It’s against the policy for most publications and often comes across as disrespectful to reporters. Remember, the real power of media coverage is its credibility – the implied endorsement of a trusted news source. Offering or expecting the opportunity to review a journalist’s article erodes earned media’s credibility.

    5. Not understanding the role of media. As PR professionals, we’re often tasked with generating positive media coverage about our client’s company, product and people. Journalists are tasked with providing their readers/viewers/listeners with info about trends, issues, challenges, innovations happening in the industry they follow. Good PR pros work to connect their clients’ purpose with the needs of a journalist and their audience. Earned media is not advertisement nor should it read like one.

    The best PR-journalist relationships are built on mutual respect, open communication and an understanding of each other’s roles and needs. By avoiding these common missteps, PR reps can go a long way toward fostering productive media relationships that generate great coverage for their clients.

    To learn more about reporters key points – and gripes – for PR people, check out our Meet the Media (MTM) blog series:

    Author: Adriana Van Duyn

    Adriana is an account supervisor at Bianchi PR with more than 20 years of B2B PR experience representing clients across the automotive, mobility and industrial sectors.

    You might also be interested in:

    Post a Comment

    Your email is never published nor shared. Required fields are marked *


    You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>