Sometimes, it can be hard to know how exactly to grab the attention of a busy journalist when you’re pitching to them via email. With the rush of the 24-hour news cycle, many journalists simply don’t have the time to read through long story pitches or take the time to invest themselves in stories that don’t immediately grab their attention.
Here at MediaHQ, it’s our job to help you make the news. We’ve come up with some quick and easy ways that will ensure your email pitch will get noticed. Here are five tips that you can use to get your email pitch picked up.
Have an attention-grabbing subject line
One of the first things a journalist will see before they even open your email is the subject line. It’s important to note that if you want to get your pitch noticed you must have a short and attention-grabbing subject line that simply emulates what your story is about. Research has proved that most journalists will not read beyond the subject line if it does not grab their immediate attention. To conquer this, our advice is to ensure your subject line is short and sweet but intriguing enough to pique their interest in what you have to offer. You don’t get a second chance to make a first impression.
Make sure your email isn’t too lengthy
Another really important thing to consider when you are crafting your pitch is to be conscious of the length of your email. Busy journalists simply do not have the time to read through a long email pitch. In order to conquer this, make sure that the body of your email is short but personalised and extremely to the point.
Cut to the chase and open your email with your story hook. You don’t need to have a super lengthy introduction or waste time explaining yourself. Jump straight into things by stating why your story is relevant to the journalist and their audience or their publications readership. Brevity is the key to getting your email pitched noticed; it makes your life and the journalists job a lot easier!
Have all your information organised
Organisation is key when it comes to pitching stories and ensuring that your email pitch will get noticed.
So, you’ve created a captivating subject line, your email is straight to the point but it lacks the relevant information and data to support a good news story. There’s an easy solution to this. It’s vitally important to ensure that you have all the necessary data, research and sources collated before you even think about pitching to them. Journalists appreciate quick and efficient correspondences rather than a thread of different emails each containing disjointed fragments of information which are intrinsic to the story’s success. Be organised and ensure that you have all facts and figures ready at your disposal to hand over to the journalist. An organised email pitch is one that will get more attention over one that is convoluted, disorganised and jarring to read.
Know who you’re pitching to
It is really important to do your background research on a journalist before pitching to them. There is no point wasting your time or anyone else’s by pitching your story to a journalist who will have no interest in what it is you have to offer. Make sure you are sending your email pitch to a niche market of journalists who cover topics pertaining to your story. This way, a journalist will be more inclined to pick up your email pitch and run your story. Otherwise, if you pitch a story to them that has no relevance to what it is that they specialise in, the chances of them ignoring your email will be high.
Journalists are always on the hunt for something new, fresh and exciting. It’s your duty to be as original as possible or to reproduce stories with a unique perspective in a way that hasn’t been written about before. Originality is an important aspect to infuse into your email pitch. Explain briefly in your email why your story is exclusive to them and newsworthy. Unoriginal or bland story hooks will not get attention, so make sure you get creative when you’re composing an email. Showcase your writing skills in a way that will grab a journalists attention and compel them to work with you.
Need inspiration? Looking to make the news? MediaHQ can help. Click here to find out more, or call Gaye on (01) 254 1845.