Pitching 101: Media advisories, press releases and more

Being a young professional in the industry, many of my closest friends and family still don’t understand exactly what public relations and media relations consists of. To keep the conversation short and sweet, I describe my profession as “emailing reporters and asking them to cover my client’s story,” which isn’t technically wrong. But it’s also so much more than that.

 

From drafting media advisories and finalizing press releases, to tailoring the perfect email pitch to the lifestyle reporter, my job can get pretty hectic!

 

In order to get coverage for a client, these tactics are the most important pieces to the media relations puzzle. Check out the most common – and successful- tools for pitching your ideal reporter below:

 

Press release

A press release, also commonly referred to as a news release, is a PR professional’s greatest asset and tool (besides the AP Stylebook!). A press release is a short, compelling news story with statements from the company that outline the most important details of an announcement. A few examples that warrant a press release include:

 

  • Moving to/opening a new location
  • Announcing a new product or service
  • Announcing a key new hire or promotion
  • Winning an award
  • Company rebrand
  • Promoting an upcoming event

 

Press releases are written with the intention of sending to members of the media. Yes, sometimes they can be housed on a company website, but the sole purpose is for the media to pick one up and decide to cover the announcement in an upcoming broadcast or draft a story online or in print.

 

Media advisory

A media advisory is not a press release and the intent is actually different, too. A media advisory is written for the media, but it’s used to make them aware of your announcement, and hopefully to cover it, too! Media advisories work best for events, press conferences or grand openings. It’s common that an event might warrant both a press release and a media advisory, if it’s important enough.

 

The best media advisories should include the “5 W’s” or the who, what, where, when and why of the event. If your advisory is lacking any details or information, it’s likely the reporter won’t take the time to reach out and ask for clarification.

 

Basic pitch

Believe it or not, sometimes your email to a reporter doesn’t have to include a release or an advisory. If you have something newsworthy for a client, but you’re not necessarily inviting them anywhere or it doesn’t warrant a release, you also have the option to simply draft the perfect email and hit send. It’s a great, quick and easy way to get your client’s name out there without spending hours on creating an extra deliverable.

 

If you decide to send a pitch, personalize it! Depending on who you’re pitching, reporters can get upwards of 500 emails each day. So, make your pitch stand out against the rest.

 

A few ways to do this include using catchy emojis or their first name in the subject line. Personalize your email further by finding out what the reporter enjoys or what they typically write about and tying it into your intro. I like to visit reporters’ Twitter accounts to gain insight before hitting send. Whatever you do though, make sure your pitch is filled with information and leave nothing to the imagination.

 

Hopefully I’ve given you enough basic information to get you started. Remember, include all the details, make it unique, make it personal, and you’re bound to have luck! Just keep pitching.

 

Need help drafting your next press release? Looking to get results for your next company announcement?  Contact Lauryn Gray at lauryn@dittoepr.com to set up a consultation today!

Ironworks Hotel Indy Celebrates Second Annual Ironworks Social

Recently, we assisted the Ironworks Hotel Indy in transforming their property from a hotel to a thriving outdoor festival for the second annual Ironworks Social event.

 

On Saturday, September 15, we celebrated the hotel’s first year in operation by hosting an event filled with live music, top-rated food and interactive activities for guests and their furry friends. The annual Ironworks Social event attracted hundreds of visitors and countless dogs while also raising thousands of dollars for the Humane Society for Hamilton County.

 

Guests enjoyed delectable menu items along with hand-crafted cocktails, beer or wine from Ironworks Hotel and Ironworks at Keystone restaurants. Food was available from Ruth’s Chris, Sangiovese Ristorante, Blue Sushi Sake Grill, Rize Restaurant and Provision, and libations from Tito’s Handmade Vodka and Daredevil Brewing Co. were available for purchase.

Indianapolis’ favorite Bluewater Kings Band and Chicago-based No Alternative Band also performed their own sets on stage, and guests were able to sing and dance the day away. Attendees could also receive complimentary mini-massages from Massage Heights Ironworks, wellness advice from Club Pilates, fitness tips from Orangetheory Fitness, purchase products and discuss civic sustainability with People for Urban Progress, make candles with Penn & Beech Candle Co., and learn more about Bottleworks Indy. One lucky attendee walked away with $1,000 of giveaway products from the in-kind donations of participating vendors.

 

The Humane Society for Hamilton County was also present with adoptable dogs and gourmet dog treats from A Dog Bakery for pups to enjoy. Along with the money raised, a few furry friends found their forever homes, too.

 

Thanks for celebrating the first birthday of Ironworks Hotel with us, Indy! We’re already looking forward to next year and can’t wait to see you again.

 

What is Public Relations? [Part 1]

When I first joined Dittoe Public Relations as a bright-eyed intern, I thought I signed up to work with reporters and schedule interviews. After getting my feet wet, I quickly learned that the world of public relations is much more than just media relations.

 

Yes, in its simplest form, the core of PR is media relations. But before you become dubbed a #PRpro, there are several different areas of expertise to master. This blog post is part one of a two-part series that will take a look at four different key areas of public relations. Part two will be shared next week by fellow PR pro Sophie Maccagnone.

 

Putting together a client event.

Whether it’s planning a grand opening, coordinating a community celebration, hosting a red carpet event or organizing a VIP night, Dittoe PR has had its fair share of event-planning experiences. Putting together a client event can be a fun and unique way to garner additional media coverage for your client. Be warned, though, that months of organization and planning go into making sure these events are a success.

 

In addition to inviting media, planning an event can include outlining the run-of-show document, coordinating schedules for celebrity appearances, general event or regulation research, working directly with vendors, designing invitations or event posters, booking talent, and providing on-site support throughout the event.

 

Earning third-party credibility.

Another overlooked public relations tactic is earning your client credibility from third-party sources. This comes in the form of writing a bylined article for a publication or putting together an award nomination. Contributing byline articles can help position clients as experts in their industry (and you should be one too), as well as showcase their services and offerings in a non-traditional way.

 

Award nominations are another way to help give clients additional street cred. Take the time to research, craft, and submit the perfect nominations to earn additional recognition for your client. That award opportunity can be used later on to show that they are qualified for the job and worth being nominated for other accolades.

 

Be sure to check out our blog next week for part two of this series on how the job of a PR pro goes beyond just media relations. And, while you wait, if you think your business or brand could benefit from our plethora of services, we’d love to hear from you!