Monday, February 20, 2006

"Oh! The Humanity!" - Simple Formula For Avoiding The Bad Pitch Blog

No one in the PR game wants to find their name posted at the Bad Pitch Blog. This blog has ginned up a lot of interest in PR circles, and rightfully so. Better that we self-police ourselves than have reporters call us out, eh?

Much of the commentary at the Bad Pitch Blog is related to written pitches. But there is plenty of flaming garbage spewed over the phone to reporters, too. I cringe when I hear a newbie ask me if it's okay to read their pitch over the phone!

My best advice for avoiding the Bad Pitch Blues (written or verbal)? Remember this simple formula: H2H

It's a silly acronym that I came up with during that silly era when every technology story came attached to a new three-letter-acronym. It was my way of telling our PR teams to NOT buy into the hype; a reminder to slow down; a call to remember that:

"You are a human. Talking. To a human."

Human 2 Human. H2H.

"Remember this one thing and you'll be successful: the world has gone haywire and the journalist you're contacting has to deal with 1,000 other PR automatons; they would rather do ANYTHING ELSE but talk to you," I say.

"They'd rather smoke a cigarette, walk their dog, hit the beach, kiss their lover, eat a burrito. They are human beings. Talk to them like human beings. Crack a joke. Take 'no' for an answer sometimes. Make a mistake. Ask for a 2nd chance."

Seth Godin made a great point about this very subject recently. Every PR pro ought to read this post, as a frame of reference for the very next pitch they write.

(And for every pitch they ever write, ever again, for that matter.)

UPDATE: Check out the Good Pitch Blog for more tips, and to add your own best pitches to this new resource.


Blogger Kevin said...

Scott - Good insight on interacting with the media. The key to doing this well is knowing yourself. If you try and be anything less than authentic, you're toast. In addition to picking up the phone, deskside briefings should also be a regular habit--based on big news of course.

On the Bad Pitch blog--don't let our name fool you. We post good and bad pitches. But we need all the help we can get. Welcome to the fray!

February 21, 2006  

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