Business Wire’s “Cultivating a Timeless Feature”
Yesterday, Business Wire hosted an event on pitching features to consumer media. Upon arrival, I was taken aback by a young, attractive, and - as I found out later during the Q&A session – well spoken audience of about 200 PR pros. I almost (almost being a key word) learned more about the industry from the stature and intent of the attendees than from the insightful panelists.
Panelists included high-profile consumer editors Susan Avery, senior editor, Grandparents.com; Jenifer Braun, weekend entertainment and consumer lifestyle editor, The Star-Ledger; Sharon King Hoge, editor, Verdant; Darcy Jacobs, articles editor, Family Circle; Kristine Kennedy, east coast editor, Better Homes and Gardens; and Tracy Saelinger, lifestyle editor, Every Day with Rachael Ray. Panelists, a strong mix of personalities, provided insight, both constructive and personal, into how to pitch most effectively. Business Wire Moderator Angela Mendola asked probing questions that generated the following trends.
Most of the publications had undergone Web and/or print redesigns and section additions over the past two years. Editors prefer concise, personalized pitches. They don’t want to be told what their story is, so products aside, they’re looking for trend pitches, not story pitches, and exclusivity is a must.