Building Media Pitching Skills: A New Tool

PR innovations are occurring at a far more rapid pace than ever before.  One recent innovation that I just discovered comes from Jason Kintzler, who created PitchEngine

Young professionals and students planning PR careers can jump start their social media proficiency by tapping into Jason’s easy-to-navigate network that already has nearly 1,000 members. 

Here’s how it works:   PitchEngine allows you to create and share social media (SMR) press releases with your contacts for free.  Among its many features, PitchEngine provides an efficient process that eliminates the need for email attachments like word docs and pdfs.  SMRs can be shared via email, copy-and-paste link, or via social sites like Facebook, FriendFeed and Twitter.

On the flip side, media can access the PitchFeed portion of PitchEngine which allows them to search, filter and subscribe to these pitches.  Eventually, Jason’s offering also will give media members the ability to accept/deny pitches based on their interest.

  In response to my question about why he spent so much time developing PitchEngine, Jason explained:  “Well, I’m a former journalist turned PR guy who saw a big disconnect when it came to technology between the two camps.  As a PR pro, I realize that a big part of successful media relationships is delivering all the content you can and making it easy on the journalist.”

I get a lot of feedback regarding my harping about the need for good writing.  Some suggest that it is not as important in social media, so I asked Jason to chime in with his point of view. 

“Good writing should always be expected.  Whether it’s in an AP style press release, or off the cuff in a 140-letter Twitter exchange, be clear, concise and use good tact. With social media, you must cut out the unnecessary corporate, marketing speak most PR pros have grown accustomed to.”   

His final writing advice:  “How would you tell someone face-to-face about  an event, product or service? Probably much different than a press release reads, right?  That’s where  social media changes the game. You’re writing with the client’s image in mind, but with less of the client’s marketing language involved.”

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