It’s the Little Things: Media List

April 22, 2016

Most folks in our office agree that pitching our clients to reporters is one of the best parts of the PR gig. The creativeness of a well-crafted pitch, the perfect position of a product or executive, and feeling of secured coverage all deliver an adrenaline rush for us PR junkies. All of these factors can lead to some fantastic results, but without the same focus towards your media list, all this effort can be easily wasted.

Well duh, Grady. If you don’t pitch the right people you won’t get coverage. This is a PR agency blog, not Communications 101.

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While media lists seem like a small box to check on the pre-launch prep list, targeting the right people to tell your story can make all the difference. This compilation of contacts isn’t something that you construct once and then use for the next year with your client. It is a fluid document that will serve you best when you take the time to tweak, update, and check in on its status before that hectic pre-launch scramble, so that the question, “How does our media list look?” isn’t even a thought.

Pro AAE tip from yours truly: don’t neglect the “Notes” section on your document. If a reporter doesn’t like to get on the phone, if they typically don’t take briefings, if they don’t like walking through a PPT preso – whatever – all of these little details can make or break the quality of your final story. These details could even mean the difference between a steady stream of coverage or zero pieces on your new product because you called, emailed, or reached out a the wrong thing or at the wrong time.

This blog was inspired by a recent update I made to a media list this past week. Despite the methodical nature of the job, there was something relaxing about taking an hour to scrub the media list, add new faces, and reconfirm contact details for our “friendlies.” Having confidence in the people you are pitching means your carefully crafted message is reaching the right target. Our clients expect this, reporters expect this, and as PR pros, it’s our responsibility to hold up this promise to both.

– Grady

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