Effective PR: Pitch Solutions, Not Products

Thursday - 31 October 2013

Dharmesh Shah puts it bluntly for PR pros: it’s unlikely your story is unique, so don’t claim it is when pitching to journalists and bloggers.

Shah’s Startup PR Tip: To Get Press, Don’t Pitch Your Product offers important insights on crafting a winning PR pitch.

Journalists are less interested in other people’s stories, and more interested in information that helps them write their own story, Shah explains. Claiming a story is unique creates expectations that, if not met, negatively impacts the rest of the pitch.

Just as content framed in “How-to” or “5 Steps for” approaches often succeeds among readers, a pitch created in a similar way can help journalists find the best talking points and arrange it into an article.

Key point:  PR should focus on what the readers want, not about getting more publicity.

Shah explains how to apply this tactic for different types of pitches:

  • New product or service. Share lessons learned during your organization’s product development process, describe how you listened to customers to better meet their needs, or explain steps involved in manufacturing products.
  • Landed a major customer. Describe how your organization changed its sales process to land the client or customer, or share stories about “the customer that got away” and what you learned from your mistakes.
  • Acquired a key investor. Explain how you helped investors embrace your organization’s vision, or share pitches to venture capitals that went wrong and how those experienced helped you improve.

Bottom line: when you offer to help people solve problems and learn from mistakes, bloggers and journalists become a lot more interested in your pitch.

 

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