The Changing Face of a PR Pitch

As a PR pro, I’m constantly pitching the media. Writing an email. Follow up call. Follow up email. Writing an email. The cycle is never ending, and unfortunately, sometimes I feel like a telemarketer calling to follow up on a media event I sent a week ago. “Hi, just calling about the XYZ event tomorrow? … What’s that, you want me to send the info again? … You’re on deadline? …” Click.  Sometimes, I can’t help but wonder — is this really the best way to get my story told to journalists? And I know I’m not alone – I’ve heard horror stories from my colleagues in PR and in the media about follow up calls gone wrong (any angry journalist is a force to be reckoned with!) and PR pitches that just plain stink. So what’s a PR pro to do when 80% of journalists still prefer to be pitched via email?

Pitches are changing day by day and I couldn’t help but bookmark, tweet about, email, share, etc. a fun PR trend that came up in my Ragan Daily – personalized, video pitches. This week, Ford released personalized video pitches to share their Ford Focus Global Test Drive Campaign with influential industry reporters. The videos not only show off the product and its features, but are meant to be embedded and shared with their readers. As Scott Monty, Ford’s director of global social media said (the bold formatting was put there by me for emphasis):

“We decided to use personalized video invitations for the Focus Global Test Drive because we wanted to be sure we had the attention of the high-level influencers we wanted to reach. Moreover, we wanted to be sure that it would be in a format that they could easily share with their readers. We believe that video is one of the most personal and intimate ways to communicate online …”

Check a video pitch below and the full story on this blog post.

What do you think? Are video pitches the way of the future? And what about other social media pitches – have you used social media (Twitter, LinkedIn, etc.) to pitch a blogger or member of the media? Has it worked?

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