Learn the Steps to the Story Pitching Dance

Learn the Steps to the Story Pitching Dance

Pitching a story idea to a reporter is a delicate dance –it takes two to do the earned media tango. Most reporters get dozens, even hundreds of emails per day. How do you get your message to stand out? Here’s a few stellar moves that will grab a reporter’s attention:

Start Out Strong

Make sure that your first step is a strong one – start your pitch with a hook that grabs the reader’s attention. Using an eye-popping stat or a surprising anecdote to get a reporter feeling the beat.

Don’t Be Shy – Ask Them to Dance

It’s hard to find a dance partner if you aren’t willing to ask. Most reporters will only spend a few seconds looking at your email before they decide whether to keep reading. Cut to the chase by making your request early, whether it’s for an interview, a TV appearance, or a byline.

It’s All in the Details

One missed step can throw your whole routine off – or even worse, leave your partner with a stubbed toe! Just like a dance routine, minding the details in your pitch keeps you from messing things up. So fill your pitch with specific stats, proofread at least twice, and tailor your message to the person reading it.

Watch Your Tempo

If you don’t have rhythm, it’s hard to move to the music. Likewise, a long email can easily take the pep out of your pitch. If you’re particularly long-winded, a reporter might decide to sit this one out, leaving you stranded on the dance floor. Don’t linger on one point either – keep your pitch moving. Think mambo or salsa!

Andrew Grafton
andrew@kbc.us