What do Reporters Hate?

Reporters have always been busy people, and they are getting even more so as news staffs are cut and individual reporters are asked to contribute to to print, Web and multi-media platforms for the same organization.

In no special order, here are some of the THINGS REPORTERS HATE when dealing with a nonprofit source, and how to WIN THEIR LOVE with a little planning and organization.

Or at least get a little respect.

REPORTERS HATE…being bounced around from one staff member to the next when they call with a question.

WIN THEIR LOVE…. by having a designated person take incoming media calls, someone who knows exactly how to direct a call.

REPORTERS HATE…getting a response to their question AFTER their deadline has passed.

WIN THEIR LOVE…by noting their deadlines when they first call in – ask about it directly – and making sure your spokespeople get back in a timely fashion.

REPORTERS HATE… picking up the phone and hearing the question, “Did you get my news release?” They might get 100 in a day. Maybe they got yours, but is that what you really want to know?

WIN THEIR LOVE….by incoporating the gist of your release upfront in your pitch call.

For instance,  you can say

“I wanted to be sure you knew about our new report on health care…our upcoming conference call on the latest city council vote…our awards ceremony”

Whatever the content of the release was,  mention it in right away.

For more on successfully pitching journalists, see Strategic Communications for Nonprofits,Chapter 7,  “Earning Good Media Coverage”