Are you struggling to find the right story angle for your client on a holiday? Trying to find a way to make editors give a small story big coverage?
As public relations experts, clients often ask us to come up with new angles and content during the holidays. That can present a challenge for anyone but sometimes the solution can be right in front of you. In truth, inspiration is everywhere—in the seasons, the natural world and the universe around you. For this exercise, we will stay a little more grounded.
I was recently tasked with writing a pitch for Regan Communications Group client Heritage Museums & Gardens in Sandwich, MA, which has a treasure trove of classic cars, during President’s Day weekend. The car in question is gorgeous. But when I received the assignment, all I could see was cars. Not only that, but we were walking into one of the biggest sale weekends for new cars. So with a barrage of car sales pitches … all I saw was cars on top of cars.
How was I going to make my car stand out?
As I began to do research my pitch began to take shape. I learned that not only was this car a classic – but also there was important historical significance attached to the 1909 White Steam Car Model M. The car was in fact, part of the original fleet of cars that were brought into the White House by then President William Howard Taft. How cool was that? It was part of the original set of four cars used by the White House. Let that sink in a moment!
Why is this part of history important?
I was able to take that information and transform what I thought was a story about just another car into an interesting and very evocative pitch to send to reporters.
Lesson learned about the importance of doing your research!
When planning a pitch, don’t make it more complicated than it needs to be. Simple often get the best results.
Here are three points that every Public Relations expert knows are important when writing a pitch:
- Get to the point … fast! Are you looking for an interview … make sure and get your intention into that first line. Reporters will react quickly if they are interested.
- Keep it short and sweet. Don’t linger and in this case don’t give the reporter a lengthy history lesson. Always remember- their time is as valuable as yours.
- Do your homework! Don’t send a pitch that is historical in nature to someone who covers fashion. This will never be forwarded to the right person and most probably all your work will be deleted before the message is even opened.
The best part is that once you find a formula that works for you, it can be repeated with success!
Now, if you are interested in seeing this fabulous classic car in person, you will have to make tracks to Cape Cod. The 1909 White Steamer is located on the grounds of Heritage Museums & Gardens in Sandwich. The car is part of the Museum’s original collection which will be on display this year beginning on April 19th.
-Judith Goetz, Team Paula