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This past Saturday, I attended Phoenix PRSA’s 9th annual publicity summit. The keynote speaker was the wonderful Paula Pedene. The topic of her speech was “Top 10 ways to engage journalists, herd cats, and other seemingly impossible tasks.” I thought her talk was really helpful. Her top 10 points are not anything that PR pros haven’t heard before, but it is nice to have the reminders every now and then.

Engage away:

10. Have a compelling story to tell.

9. Use journalism style. (Time, date place and who, what, when, where, why.)

8. Always tell the truth.

7. Make good on your promises.

6. Understand what they do. (Which is not to serve your clients.)

5. Gimmickry has its limits – but still be creative.

4. Leave the pitching with a good relationship.

3. Work within the media. (Visuals don’t work with radio, length doesn’t work with T.V., etc.)

2. Do your research. (Be an expert on the subject matter, in case the journalist has questions.)

1. Always be grateful for the opportunity to pitch, even if there are no results.


What other advice would you give to PR pros for pitching journalists?

Kelly Potts
Kelly Potts
A former HMA Public Relations employee.

1 Comment

  1. Beth says:

    I like the way that the points are clear and concise- this makes it easy for everyone to understand, even PR novices! Although it is said in many of the points, I would add Be friendly and polite as good manners always go a long way. Thanks for sharing!

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