8 Ways Journalists Take the “Annoying” Torch Back from PR Pros

Over the last several years, PR professionals have been graced with the superfluous presence of ‘Top X Ways PR Pros Irritate Journalists’ articles; it’s a well-favored topic in our industry. Honestly, if we had a dollar for every ‘Best Way to Ruin a Media Relationship’ blog post that mentions how PR pros are messing it up, we’d at least have enough to buy a pair of Manolo Blahniks.

Yes, we know that there are many people who think they can do PR well, but are missing the appropriate education and experience. There are those that think sending a press release to a 2-year old list with 500 contacts is okay, and there are some who think calling a journalist every day to follow up on an email s/he is obviously not interested in is acceptable. But not every PR professional shares these opinions, and not every PR professional is annoying to journalists. At Ketner Group, we’ve developed strong, mutually respectful relationships with our media contacts, especially in the retail and hospitality industry, and they value our influence and contributions.

We love journalists! We’ll do everything we can to help make their job easier, and if we occasionally teeter on the annoying side (let’s be honest, every PR person has at some point), it isn’t intentional. But…since we’re being honest, let’s admit that we PR pros aren’t the only people who’ve crossed the “Welcome to Annoying, population a zillion” border sign. So in good fun and humor, we’d like to point out some of the minor annoyances we feel when working with journalists.

1. When journalists suggest whacky ideas for PR practices. I’m sure journalists everywhere have their own personal preferences for email or phone pitching etiquette and we really do like to know and honor those preferences! But for the love of all things delicious and chocolaty, please don’t assume your preference is universally shared. I’ve read advice from journalists that suggest PR people should quit sending press releases and keep press pages current, because they’ll check your company’s site proactively if they’re interested. Yeah? You’ll think on your own to check out our clients’ sites for important news? We all know you’re too busy for that, and if we don’t send you press releases, memories of our clients and their customers will quickly melt from your mind like high scooped ice cream on a hot, sunny day. Continue reading