People ask me how to pitch their stories to reporters. Here are my key tips. I’ve written them with an economy of words because you should too! You can get your point across by writing short messages.
- Find the right reporter. Read a few articles to get to know them.
- Determine which part of your story would interest the reporter and her readers. Hint: the angle might not be the one you originally wanted to pitch.
- Your success completely depends on the intersection of the reporter’s interests and your story. If you don’t have the right story angle, you won’t get covered. Here’s an example. Let’s say you’ve written a book about the five factors that make for success in business. Here are a few angles for different reporters:
- Book editor: Local author and expert publishes new book. This might sound dull, but local newspapers write these stories all the time!
- Business editor: New book shows five tips to get ahead
- Women’s editor: Successful woman business leaders shares tips for success
Those examples clearly focus on the author and her subject AND are interesting to a reporter. Here are examples to show how the author can latch onto cyclical news stories (also called newsjacking or piggybacking). Reporters write these “theme” stories all the time. They always look for experts to quote.
- Local businesswoman shows how to fight abuse and discrimination in the office
- Breaking through the glass ceiling can be done, local businesswoman-author says
- Negotiating for pay raises for women in five easy steps, according to local businesswoman-author
- How women can answer tough interview questions to get the job of their dreams; advice from successful businesswoman-author
Good luck pitching! Let me know what works.
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