Posts Tagged Pitching

Revealing (not pushing) an Agenda to the Media

A good PR person views themselves as the eyes and ears of the media – not a salesperson. We exist to help the media do their job better. We’re granted access to the most sensitive views and positions of a company, as well as research, technology and often customer experiences from our clients – a privilege for sure. Our position is coveted by journalists whose job depends on getting access to this very information. And they work really hard to get it on their own! When we share what we know rather than ramming it down a journalist’s throat, clients get the opportunity for ink.

Case and point from our client Exigen Services. These guys have a vision to transform the application outsourcing industry (and they really do have something special). Unfortunately, every journalist in the space has heard this story before and is rightfully jaded. Our approach? Share what we know and help the journalist find a new angle to an old story.

InformationWeek listened (scroll down to read customer comments). ZDNet’s IT Project Failure’s blogger listened. TechTarget’s SearchSoftwareQuality.com and SearchCIO.com both listened seperately. SoftwareProjects.com blogger videod (and posted to YouTube.com). Financial Times’ magazine, Direct Foreign Investment listened. Financial Services Outsourcing asked Exigen Services to explain it (so did Bank Systems & Technology). Projects @ Work thought the company was on to something. IT Business Edge thought they had one, an ‘edge’ that is.

We’re not done helping journalists see the industry through Exigen Services’ eyes, however if Inc Magazine’s Fastest Growing Private Companies in America is any indication that Exigen does have something special, we’re living up to our end of the PR / journalist relationship.

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Conversing, not Pitching, Leads to Ink Today

Journalists are being bitten by the economy more than most other markets and if you’ve tried to get them to write about your company recently, you know this first hand. PC Magazine is no different. When NCP engineering asked us to get ink with this heavy weight pub for their Windows 7 VPN client launch, we went right to work. Our strategy? Talk with the writer on his own terms and translate a ‘pitch’ to a ‘conversation’.

With PC Magazine’s Forward Thinking blogger, Michael Miller, in our sights, we went to work. Miller is active in PC help forums so we started there. Like the rest of the software media, Miller was focused on Windows 7 so we identified key forums he’d be likely to show up in. And when we did, we started the conversation about NCP. The moniker you see, VPN Haus, is our blog for NCP. Having a real conversation with a journalist requires transparency. The seed was planted: NCP offered a VPN client for the beta Windows 7. Next, we saw he wrote about the topic on his blog, and so we commented there as well.

By addressing Miller on his own terms we had managed to introduce our client, their product and a key message or two. Now we were confident that a traditional email pitch would not only get read, it would also jog his memory of the forum post and blog comment. We were in! Miller responded to our email and requested the product to test. Success!

We’ll update this post with the PC Magazine ink our ‘conversation’ style generated for NCP’s product.

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