Your relationships with journalists are ones that should be nurtured. Like a fine wine, they mature and grow stronger over time, and can lead to some great moments!
Building an authentic relationship will not happen overnight, taking a mix of research and persistence. Put in the effort now and you will reap the rewards at a later date.
Here are our tips that can help you build relationships with journalists.
Read their work: without reading a journalist’s work, how will you know if your pitch is relevant? Take time to study the content produced by the reporter, digging in depth and even commenting on several pieces. If you can demonstrate a real understanding of their interests and output, you’ll be more likely to receive a friendly reply.
Follow on social media: similarly, follow the reporter on social media, particularly on platforms such as Twitter and Instagram. Retweet posts that you have found interesting, as well as sending a tweet saying that you enjoyed reading their latest piece.
Know their deadlines: be familiar with the reporter’s lead times and avoid sending pitches at the busiest time in their working day. Show that you’re aware of their schedule when pitching, and always provide follow-up information when you say you will.
Show you can help: when forging a connection, demonstrate how you can be an expert and a helpful source for the reporter to be in contact with. Provide compelling stories, leads and opportunities that will be of mutual benefit.
Keep in regular touch: whilst your story may not be of interest to the reporter straightaway, keep in touch with them if they indicate that they’d like to work with you in the future. Perhaps send them an email when they’ve covered a story that has similarities with your own, or when you have exclusive news that you’d like to share. Ensure you get the balance right!
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