Adding Twitter to the Pitching Toolbox

As a public relations professional with a journalism degree, I’m always intrigued by the ever-evolving writing techniques in the industry. The most recent post I came across coined a term that has been integrating public relations with a popular social media platform since its debut in 2008.

A few weeks ago, my friend and colleague Hannah Babcock, wrote an article about Twitcher, the art of pitching via Twitter. Although a Twitch might not be as mainstream as a professional phone call or email, I agree with Hannah when she explains that a 140-character Tweet is often times more personal.

… “Twitcher” takes a more humanized approach to pitching, because you’re more transparent and relatable. Crafting a pitch within 140 characters also cuts down on jargon and unnecessary language. -Babcock, Twitcher- Pitching Through Twitter

To further backup the potential effectiveness of Twitcher, I would like to stress the one of the cardinal rules of public relations— know your audience. Working in the travel and tourism industry, I’m often pitching travel writers whose job it is to be on the go. As these writers are traveling, they use Twitter to update their followers on their experiences.

Although I’m constantly seeing mobile activity on Twitter, how often are these writers diving into emails on their smartphones? Inboxes tend to fill up quickly when out of the office. My strategy is to have the information accessible, while using Twitter to grab their attention and direct them to finding out more by way of email.

About a month ago, I pitched a journalist and invited her to a press trip on behalf of our client. Two weeks went by without a response, so I decided to send her a follow-up using Twitter. I simply stated that I had hoped to hear from her soon and within minutes, I received a direct message providing me with a better email address.

Making a long story short, by using an alternative communication method to follow-up, I was able to fill a spot on our press trip with an impressive journalist in under 140-characters.