Public Relations and Journalism: an (un)easy symbiosis

Can journalists and PR practitioners get along? Or is it bound to be an adversarial relationship where PR people think of journalists as conniving relentless truth hounds and journalists think of all PR people as spin doctors and sellouts to corporate greed?

Here are 4 great tips for PR practitioners who want to get along with journalists and ensure their message gets on the news, from news anchor and correspondent Rita Cosby:

1. Be respectful of journalist schedules and time- Do not pitch an hour before deadline, or several times a week.

2. Craft pitches that are “crisp and clear”- be brief, to the point and do not overload journalists with weekly pitches with little newsworthy content

3. Know the journalist, what they cover and how they cover it- Then craft your pitch to suit these preferences

4. Craft a relationship with journalists by being forthcoming in both good and bad times for the organization

Peter Himler also pens a “wish list” for either side of the PR|Journalism equation, a good insight into the needs of both professionals.

Source: The Practice of Public Relations (Seitel)

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