I received a pitch from a PR firm today via Facebook. The opening paragraph started with the following statement:
"I have read through some articles of your blog, Converational Media Marketing. Upon hearing your valuable opinions and expertise about marketing..."
While I in nowise care to "out" or embarrass the PR person that sent this, I can't help but make a couple remarks.
First, the PR person misspelled the name of my blog. If nothing else, get that right.
Second, simply stating "I have read through some articles of your blog..." is not enough to convince me that she actually did. Had the person cited at least a couple of the posts she read in particular or, better yet, taken time to leave a couple of salient comments on those posts, her statement would be more believable.
In short, this seems rather boilerplate to me. What do you think?
This goes back to my rant of yesterday, get to know me before you pitch me. Before ever making the first pitch, contact me to say that you're following my blog, subscribing to my RSS feed, getting to know me by virtue of my writing and leave it at that!
PR folks, take some time to source blogs in the niche markets you serve and do as I suggest. Subscribe to their RSS feeds and begin reading them, then contact the blogger to let him/her know you're doing so. You are welcome to be honest and say that, perhaps, in the future you may pitch them. Forewarned is forearmed after all. You can even ask them if they'd be open to such.
I know that doesn't synch with today's fast track mentality, but it's the price of success if you ask me.
Time for education, not just dialog
I really think it's time someone step up to the plate and begin teaching agencies how to pitch bloggers -- those that would be receptive anyway. If, as some suggest, the industry has a whole doesn't get it, then like I said in response to Mack Collier's post at MarketingProfs, someone is missing a great business opportunity.
In an email conversation with my BFF Toby Bloomberg, she indicated that some are beginning to address the issue from an educational standpoint. Specifically, she cited a FIR podcast Neville Hobson and Shel Holtz are doing on PR spam. She's even thinking about coming up with something herself.
Also, let me recommend Brian Solis' treatise on the topic, a 53 page eBook he wrote entitled The Art and Science of Blogger Relations. (Links to his blog post on the topic. You can download the eBook from there.) It's one of the best and most comprehensive resources I've seen to date.
Save the world from bad pitches, that's my motto.
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