Take the public relations pro who starts off her email: “I have some timely story ideas that your viewers might have interest in hearing more about. Any of the story ideas listed below can work well for in-studio interviews or packaged segments. Please let me know if you have interest in booking. Thanks in advance for your time and consideration.”
She goes on to list six topics from flu to insect bites. Her press release’s email signature doesn’t make it clear who she is or where her marketing agency is based. She sends the email to an Arizona journalist, but for all he knows, her marketing firm could be based in New York or Illinois.
Journalists welcome story ideas, but publicists should focus their communications skills on one topic at a time especially when time-deprived reporters rest their trigger fingers on the word “delete.” The marketing strategy should zero in on one great pitch, not a series of generic ideas that make a press release wallow in mediocrity. If your goal is to ensure journalists see your agency as a hub of experts and place your contact information in their iPhone favorites, that relationship will build itself naturally with one or two great (and specific) pitches.
Whether in the worlds of old or new media, too much of a good thing can miss the target.