In the fast-paced world of PR, standing out from the crowd can be a daunting task. With journalists bombarded by a deluge of press pitches every morning, how can you ensure that your email doesn’t get lost in the abyss? The answer lies in the power of face-to-face interactions and making genuine connections. In this article, we delve into the often overlooked strategy of leveraging big industry events to not only attract new clients but also to strengthen existing relationships with journalists.
Building Foundations with Journalists
Picture this: A journalist opens their overflowing inbox, besieged by an army of subject lines vying for attention. And there it is, amidst the chaos, your name pops up. And your email gets opened.
Why? Because you’ve invested the time and effort to meet this journalist in person. Maybe you’ve shared a convo over a coffee, or perhaps you’ve ventured on a liquid lunch together. Either way, you’ve left an indelible impression that sets you apart from the sea of impersonal emails.
In the battle for inbox supremacy, familiarity is your secret weapon.
The Power of Big Industry Events
As a former gaming PR aficionado, one of my fondest memories was attending The Toy Fair at London Olympia. Amidst the buzz and an abundance of shiny gadgets, I found myself rubbing shoulders with tech journalists galore. We had coffee, and if my memory serves me correctly, there were a few beers!
These moments created a bond, a connection that extended beyond the event itself. It was the foundation of a relationship that would pay dividends in the future.
Don’t Forget the Pre-Event Reach-Out
Now, before you pack your bags and dive headfirst into the next big industry event, here’s a gentle reminder: reach out to your journalist contacts beforehand! While it’s all good and well to make new connections, don’t neglect the goldmine of existing contacts. Drop a friendly email, tell them you’re going to the event and invite them for a coffee.
The Nurturing Effect
Remember, journalists are humans too, and they appreciate the effort you’ve put into forging a genuine connection. When the time comes to send that email pitch, your name will stand out, increasing the chances of it being opened and read.
In the fast-paced world of PR, where every email competes for attention, the personal touch can make all the difference. Big industry events present a unique opportunity to get a bit out of your virtual comfort zone and make lasting connections with journalists.
By investing time in pre-event reach-outs, you’re setting yourself apart from the impersonal mass of pitches. So, as you gear up for your next big industry event, remember the power of real-life relationships and familiarity.
It’s not always what you know. It’s who you know!