Yesterday I received a copy of Rafe Needleman’s Pro PR Tips in the mail from ITDatabase. I’d seen some of the tips previously via Twitter and on the Pro PR Tips blog, but the book presents them in a nice, clean format that makes for a good read. I ended up going through all 100 tips in one sitting.
In the book the PR tips are broken down into various categories like PR basics, pitch tips, demo tips, etc. Some are practical and useful, others are pretty entertaining.
Among the ones I liked, here are a dozen that stood out:
Tip #7: Don’t thank me
When you thank me for a good review, I get suspicious. I think I must have missed something and let you off too easy.
Tip #14: Dirty Secret
Every now and then, press releases work. (Yes, writers hate blind press releases. Except when they are good).
Tip #16: Not BFFs
Dear PR Person,
We didn’t “work together” back in 1999. You pitched me. It was beautiful, but don’t make it more than it is.
Tip #21: Guest List
People I want to hear a pitch from, in descending order: CEO, CTO, VP Product Development, Janitor, Brand Marketing Manager.
Tip #25: Black list
Yes, I really do have a list of PR people I won’t talk to. It’s shorter than you probably think, though. Everyone deserves a second chance.
Tip #27: You do your job, I’ll do mine
Will we take a submitted article? I just threw up a bit in my mouth.
Tip #37 Uh-huh
If we’re doing a demo via phone and WebEx, at least 25% of the time that you’re talking, I’m reading my email.
Tip #42: Flair
A sure way to get your email noticed: Use colored backgrounds, fancy fonts, and complex templates. Journalists love that.
Tip #44: How not to pitch
“As seen on TechCrunch” is a bad way to start a pitch to me.
Tip #49: Where’s the fire?
The flag on your email says, “Urgent.” My brain says, “Meh.”
Tip #73: Decoder ring
You say: “Google’s entry into this space validates our market.” You mean: “We’re screwed.”
Tip #74: Restroom pitch
Yes, I would like to hear your pitch, but not until you zip up, wash your hands, and we leave the bathroom.
What are some of your favorites? By the way, ITDatabase is giving away free copies of the book to tech PR professionals; you can fill out a form on their blog.