Connect Your Clients with the News as It Happens
As public relations professionals, we should constantly have a pulse on what’s popular in the world, especially in terms of what’s hot in the media. This keen understanding and knowledge of trending topics help us keep our clients at the forefront and constantly available for media interviews – all thanks to a tactic called “reactive pitching.”
In Spring 2018, the eyes of the world were focused on Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s Royal Wedding. Integrate took advantage of the opportunity to increase media exposure for one of our clients, Brian Gavin Diamonds. This Houston-based international jewelry brand specializes in precision-cut diamonds and custom jewelry creations.
Since Houston media obviously couldn’t get their hands on Meghan Markle’s custom-made diamond ring, we offered them the next best thing – a chance to get an up-close look at a similar diamond engagement ring created by Brian Gavin Diamonds. Through timely, reactive pitching, Integrate secured a segment with Sally MacDonald on KRIV-FOX26 during the week of the Royal Wedding.
In an exclusive conversation with Brian Gavin, a fifth-generation diamond cutter from South Africa, the FOX anchors discussed the special diamond and the process for creating a custom ring like Meghan’s, along with other royal-worthy creations. By working in real-time, we successfully inserted Brian Gavin into the conversation in a relevant way that garnered valuable media exposure.
At Integrate, we understand the value of balancing strategy and acting quickly to not miss our chance at valued media coverage. Here are three major tips for crafting reactive pitches to the media that are successful:
1) Keep a Pulse on What’s Happening
You should never underestimate the importance of reacting quickly to timely opportunities that occur in the media, whether it’s serious news or pop culture. Yes, you should still create substantial, well-planned strategies for your clients, but it’s perfectly acceptable to shift plans according to reactive opportunities. Why? Because it’s impossible to plan for a reactive, off-the-cuff pitch.
2) Think Creatively
It’s not always an easy task to insert a client into a timely event. It takes strategic, creative tactics to develop a newsworthy and enticing pitch for media, especially if a story is actively developing. Never be afraid to think outside the box or trust your instincts. In cases such as The Royal Wedding, quick and creative thinking landed our client thousands of media impressions.
3) Time is Truly of the Essence
When an opportunity for a reactive pitch comes available, it will only be there for a short period of time. The media move from story to story faster than you can imagine – especially in our 24-hour news cycle – so it is up to us, as public relations professionals, to act as quickly as we can. Otherwise, our “timely” pitch will be too late.
The only way you can truly plan in advance for effective reactive pitching is to look for every opportunity to work proactively with the media and provide relevant sources from your clients for their stories and segments.
The window of opportunity to be successful with reactive pitching is slim, but if you stay on your toes, your clients will reap the benefits.