How to NOT pitch a blogger
I recently came across a mom blogger with a wealth of resources for parents and families. I was impressed with her dedication, passion and the overall quality of the content she was sharing. She also did something that stood out to me. She crafted a few posts of terrible pitches she had received over the years and pointed out their flaws.
Now, I”m not going to point out all of the things wrong with the pitch above – which I think we can all agree, is pretty much a train wreck. (I think this guy probably has caught enough grief, as the mom blogger did a nice job destroying it, if you are interested.) And to be honest, I thought this was an excellent scare tactic for PR pros. It basically said “Waste my time with a careless pitch, and I”ll make you pay by humiliating you in front of my subscribers.” Genius, really.
With the rise of digital media, more and more people have taken to the art of blogging. Search the web and you can find almost any topic written, analyzed, exploited and turned inside-out by some blog enthusiast. As a PR professional, blogs are a perfect outlet. Bloggers are often experts about their topic – with other experts and enthusiasts reading their content. And they have something traditional media outlets can lack: Real passion for what they are writing about.
With that being said, there is definitely a right slot machines – and of course, wrong – way to pitch bloggers. Here are some tips:
- Do your research – As with any outlet, don”t waste the time of the person you are pitching. Genuinely research the blogger, and pitch only relevant stories. There is no use in trying to weasel your client into a pitch that just doesn”t make sense for the outlet. Truly, you are wasting your time, and theirs.
- Show some respect – Bloggers are excellent outlets and should be treated with the same respect you would show the senior editor of a daily newspaper. Take your time to craft a grammatically correct, well thought out pitch.
- Tailor your content – Most bloggers aren”t going to simply upload your press release to their site. So don”t include them in mass emails with a release attached (truly, this tactic is dying for traditional media outlets, too) Blogs are often visually driven. Again, research, understand the content, then put together an easy to use, easy to understand package – whether that includes pictures and captions, an infographic, facts, etc.
- Be clear and concise – Bloggers don”t want to spend 10 minutes trying to decipher your pitch. State your purpose and why you think it is relevant to their readers. It isn”t the job of the bloggers to try and make the connection between your content and their readers – it”s yours.
What other tips do you have for pitching bloggers? If you are a blogger, how do you expect to be treated?