Are Reporters Reading Your E-Mails?


It’s 8:30 a.m. and you’ve spent the morning crafting the perfect e-mail to announce your brand new clothing line for dogs.   You click “send” and wait for a response from the business editor at The New York Times.

Now, it’s noon and still no response from the editor. You call and get voice mail so you leave a message. Days go by and still no response.

Does this sound familiar?

These days, most reporters are swamped with deadlines and just trying to keep their jobs. They don’t have time to contact anyone who pitches irrelevant topics.

…But what’s that? You say you researched the reporter and thought he or she would really be interested in your new dog collar?

Well, maybe it’s not your pitch, maybe it’s your e-mail.

You may very well have a great story to tell. But if you don’t send a user-friendly e-mail, you’ll get nowhere fast.

When crafting an e-mail that is going to reporters, try to keep these tips in mind:

– Keep it short and sweet.
Get to the point fast and avoid “fluff.” Stick to the facts.

– Focus on the benefits.
Why is the reporter going to care about what you have to say?

– Include links.
Try to add links to important data relevant to your pitch. That way, reporters can easily get additional information fast.

– Run Spell Check.
Be sure to check for grammatical and spelling errors before sending out your e-mail. You want to present yourself as a professional who took some time to create the e-mail.

-Where’s your contact information?
If reporters want to learn more, can they find your contact information easily? You may want to include your cell phone number so they don’t have any problems reaching you.

It takes some skill to pitch reporters and give them a unique story packed with excitement and benefits. And once you spend the appropriate time crafting your pitch, don’t forget to proof your e-mail too.

After all, if it’s too long, boring and packed with errors, your message will go straight to the wastebasket. And who wants to waste time and effort like that?

If you have questions about your PR and copywriting efforts, please let me know here or at I’d love to hear from you!

Click Here to Leave a Comment Below
Vee - November 6, 2008 Reply

Again, you have provided some great tips for anyone needing to get noticed/considered by reporters.

Will add them to my list and thank you.

Melanie - November 6, 2008 Reply

Thanks Vee. Glad to help!

Donna Amos - November 6, 2008 Reply

You are not recommending that a press release be sent to a reporter? I take from this that the email is a little more personal and shorter than a typical press release.
Thanks for the info. I have done just the opposite.

rembrandtwrites - November 6, 2008 Reply

Hi Donna,

Thanks for your comment. It’s still important to send your press release to the appropriate reporters and make phone pitches. But when you do send an e-mail to a media member, it should be targeted, succinct and provide valuable information.

Hope that helps,

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