Email pitches are probably the trickiest item for PR professionals to write, not only because you want to capture a product launch, company news, etc in a simple yet concise way but because you’re also trying to grab a reporter’s attention. Your pitch has to be compelling enough that a reporter will not just click on your email but feel that it’s interesting enough to share with his/her readers.
Grab Their Attention With A Headline Worthy Subject Line
It won’t matter how great the rest of your email pitch is if your intended target doesn’t even bother to open that email. The first step is to write a subject line that will grab someone’s attention. Have it be applicable to your client or their product (don’t try to trick anyone) but still noticeable and interesting. If there’s a celebrity or famous CEO that’s associated with the product, don’t be shy about name-dropping in the subject line. The headline “George Lucas’ Star Wars Tamagotchis Launching in 10,000 West Coast Stores” stands out a lot more than “Tamagotchis Come Out With New Toys in California.” Twitter has become an excellent medium to practice writing attention-worthy subject lines due to the 140 character limit.
Keep It Short And Simple
After your subject line, lead off with what would interest a reporter’s audience about your client or product. Is it that 40% of Americans use social media as a guide before a major purchase? Or that 88-90% of Americans who have a smartphone use your client’s particular app? Stats and fact-based evidence lend credibility to your pitch. At the same time, keep your pitch short and sweet, about 3-5 sentences in 1 paragraph. No one is going to read more than that, frankly, unless it’s to make fun of you.
What’s Your Call To Action?
Don’t forget to include an action line and offer additional information if needed. An abrupt ending can lead to confusion, which leads nowhere but if you provide a course of action for the recipient, they’ll know what to do. Don’t confuse a call to action with a directive or a command. That always comes across as pushy and/or rude. And don’t forget your manners. A “thanks for reading” goes a long way.
Still unsure of how to write an email pitch? The Open Notebook has an excellent article and don’t forget that practice makes perfect.
By Courtney Lee