The following article was submitted by Gina Joseph, Digital Engagement Manager at Cision. Here are 5 habits of millennial media and what that means when you pitch.
Like so many other J-School grads in the mid 00’s, I exited college with a journalism degree only to develop a career based around marketing and PR. But it has given me an interesting perspective on the relationship between journalists and PR pros, and helped me in my role when it comes to relating to the media.
For those journalism grads who landed writing and broadcasting jobs, the landscape has drastically changed from where it was 10 years ago. And with those changes came new skills, more responsibilities and a steep learning curve. So what’s the best way to catch the attention of the millennial media generation?
- Ask them what they like to cover. With a leaner staff, outlets are requiring more breadth from journalists. This is particularly true for millennials who started their career in trying times for journalism. As a result, a quick search may not give you a clear picture of their preferred beat – so ask what they most like to cover or check their Cision profile for their comments and preferences.
- Turn the supporting cast into the A-list.You’ll score points with millennial media if you share more than a headshot after they have interviewed your client. This generation of journalists know that great photos and video help their content perform better online. At web-only outlets like Gawker, the newsroom is run with a leaderboard that reports on performance of content in real time.
- Be an authority.With fewer journalists and more content than ever, millennial reporters are spread thin. More than previous generations, millennials expect to easily find information on a potential source. If your client wants to be the authority on a topic, make it so on your website. Original content may just bring millennial media to you.
- Follow their career.When millennial media move to a new outlet, say congrats! (Cision’s @media_moves Twitter handle will keep you apprised of recent outlet and journalist changes). You both have long careers ahead of you and staying in touch not only keeps you in-the-know, but can make your relationship that more productive (and happy). Find a good excuse to connect, even if it’s just sending a note on one of their stories you liked.
- Find them on Social. Speaking of Twitter, building a relationship via social media is becoming more widely accepted, and you’d be hard-pressed not to find a millennial journalist on at least one social platform. Notice I didn’t say “pitching via social media,” as social is first and foremost a channel to engage and interact. Once you have built that relationship, you’ll know whether your media contact minds a pitch or two coming in through a tweet or Facebook message.
What are some tips you have with connecting with millennial journalists?