I recently gave a presentation in Hong Kong on the topic of how startups can do their own online PR. I touted HARO as a great tool for reaching out to journalists and reporters, but recently became aware of another resource from Publicize, a results-oriented PR firm. Publicize has created a free list of 100 tech reporters. But it doesn’t stop there, they also have lists of reporters at the top 100 newspapers, complete with names and email addresses.
But before you go ahead and copy all those email addresses and start sending five emails each day, begging for them to write an article about your company, stop and think for a minute–will that work? Of course not. I write for Forbes, Entrepreneur, and other publications. I get pitches all the time from companies wanting coverage. Most of them never get written up in an article. Why not? I think I’m a reasonable guy, so hopefully it’s not just because I’m a jerk. Part of it is that I’m busy. I can only write so many articles. Part of it is that people pitch me on stories where I don’t have any relevant expertise, and I try not to write about things I don’t know about. Part of it is that people give a bad pitch. If I can tell someone hasn’t read any of my writing, doesn’t know what I write about, and is just spamming me and a bunch of other writers, then that email gets deleted. If they send me more emails, they get blocked. But if someone writes a thoughtful email directly to me, and it’s obvious they’ve done their research and picked me for a reason, then I’ll at least respond. And chances are, if they’re really done their research, they’ll know what to say to me to get me interested in their story. You need to do the same before you start contacting the reporters on this list.
So check out my slides linked above, take a look at the list of reporters, and check out this infographic, also from the folks at Publicize. As the infographic points out, PR is becoming intertwined with SEO. Some of the best SEO is good PR.