How PR professionals should pitch bloggers

At BlogHer07 there was a bit of a dustup from bloggers critisizing the PR industry, David Wescott was at the start of it.

I really like what the folks at Ogilvy are doing in the Social Media space, John Bell, Rohit, and others have been very proactive in the social media space and are showing a lot of thought leadership. I’ve even worked with them, as we share some common clients.

Ogilvy is building some rules of engagement, read The Ogilvy Blogger Outreach Code of Ethics . It’s a good effort in building an effective way for all parties to share information.

I get pitched by PR folks very frequently, and it’s likely to dramatically increase in coming months. I get a lot of emails, and now facebook messages from PR professionals. Here’s a few tips on how to get me to get interested in your clients work. Don’t pitch me. Instead, get to know me, and build a relationship, leave comments on my blog, join the conversation. Find out what I’m interested in. Read my blog, examine the keywords, read the about page, my focus is on Web Strategy, find out what that means! I usually ignore the generic press release, it gets deleted quickly, consider a personal message. Consider not pitching a press release or announcement at all, why not point me to relevant blog posts from the client (non marketing ones) that I’d be willing to add to my blog. Always remember that I’m thinking of my readers first, so if the content is not going to help them, I’m not going to point to it –think backwards.

I have a lot of friends in the PR industry, and at one point, was even considering joining a PR firm to help lead their social media programs. I have a lot more respect for this industry as I started to get more involved. So you know, I will glance at all of your emails, won’t respond to 99% of them, but will always treat you with respect.