Marketing Lab: Phil Miller and Katy Guest – Tips for Writers Pitching to Journalists
Freelance reviewer, editor and journalist Katy Guest and novelist and arts correspondent for The Herald Phil Miller share expert advice for pitching to journalists and publications.
How to pitch yourself to journalists
- Do your research: Always read the publication you’re pitching to. Make a decision about which section your story should be in and think about what you can add to it.
- Rehearse your story: Be sure you know your story inside out, so you can tell it in a short and concise way that will capture a journalist’s attention.
- Be aware of deadlines: Remember that journalists are often on a deadline and this will vary whether they’re on daily news (in which case they’ll have an afternoon deadline) or a weekly one (they’ll want info ahead of time).
- Follow up: Feel free to follow up; emails do get lost or forgotten sometimes. Just don’t be so persistent you become annoying.
- Connect online: Consider connecting with journalists via social media. Some are happy to accept pitches from people who’ve contacted them via Twitter – it’s a journalist-friendly medium.
- Follow trends: Keep an eye on current topics trending in the news. If something you’re an expert in hits the headline, call up the comment desk and offer to write a piece on it.
- Consider your strengths: Think about areas where you might shine even if they aren’t directly book rated. Maybe you have a story that would be great for the gossip, humour or diary columns.
Get more marketing, networking and advertising tips for writers in our series of Marketing Lab videos.