If you’re a PR professional working within the B2B space, you’re probably well aware that the process of pitching a B2B brand is quite different than pitching a consumer brand. B2B brands often offer specific products or services that are only relevant to a niche audience, which can make the idea of reaching that audience seem daunting even for experienced communications professionals.
Fear not — Scooter Media’s team of media relations experts have plenty of experience pitching B2B clients, and we’ve learned quite a few lessons along the way.
Here are four best practices to know when it comes to B2B pitching:
#1: Know Your Target Audience
While knowing the target audience you want to reach through PR efforts might seem obvious, it’s important to emphasize as your audience forms the foundation upon which all future steps are built. Without identifying your targeted audience, you won’t have direction on who your PR efforts should focus on — and which publications you should pitch in order to reach them.
Once you’ve identified your target audience, take the time to learn more about them. Find out what their needs are and how your B2B brand can make their lives easier. Also, consider how your audience gets their information; is it through an important trade publication, or by attending an industry conference? Spending time doing this research will equip you with the knowledge you need as you continue executing the rest of your PR plan.
Tip #2: Pitch the Right Publication
Just as your brand has a specific audience to serve, so do media outlets. Once you have identified the audience you are attempting to reach through your PR efforts, the next step is to identify which publications that audience is reading to learn more about their industry.
For example, if your brand produces equipment used by car manufacturers to produce vehicles, then you will want to leverage publications whose audience includes car manufacturing executives.
The easiest way to begin the process of identifying the B2B publications that serve your audience is through a simple Google search. Continuing the above example, if you’re looking for a publication that serves car manufacturers, try using a search term like “publications for car manufacturers.” You can also use platforms such as Cision to narrow down the search for these publications.
Take the time necessary to research these publications and ensure they are a good fit for your audience; otherwise, you may end up wasting valuable time, or find that your pitches are rejected or go unanswered.
Tip #3: Review Editorial Calendars
Nearly all publications produce an editorial calendar that is published a few months before the end of a calendar year. Editorial calendars outline topics that the publication will be producing content on throughout the next year. Rather than sending a cold pitch, review these editorial calendars to identify which topics the publication will be working on and see how your brand can logically connect to those topics.
Editorial calendar content is always a priority for publications, as oftentimes it is the content their audience has come to expect. Even unsuccessful pitches for one story can still drive results in the long run, as your pitch gives a touchpoint to reporters who may be looking for thought leadership like yours when working on a future story.
Tip #4: Carefully Craft Your Pitch
Now that you have reviewed editorial calendars and identified the topics that your brand can speak on, the next step is actually writing your pitch. When pitching a B2B brand, consider offering a few topics your thought leaders can speak to, instead of limiting the pitch to just one narrow topic. Editorial calendars usually only give a brief description of the content that will be covered, so offering a few relevant topics for editors to consider will help them identify if your brand is a good fit for an upcoming story.
Another tip: use bullet points when outlining these topics. Editors have a full plate, and if they must search for the point of your pitch, they will send it straight to the trash. Bullet points will clearly separate one topic from another, making your pitch easier for editors to digest.
Breaking into the B2B space can be an overwhelming process when you’re first starting out, but by following these four tips, you’ll be on your way to becoming a B2B pitching pro.
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