Responding to media enquiries can be an exciting but daunting task, especially for those who are new to the world of PR. There are so many things brands have to consider before potentially pitching their products for consideration. By providing all of the correct info, in the correct manner, you’ll not only save journalists valuable time, making their busy lives that little bit easier, plus it will also help to set you apart from the crowd. Unsure where to start? Not to worry – we’ve listed our top tips below to keep you right when responding to those all-important media enquiries via the Press Loft platform!
First of all – what is a media enquiry?
Media enquiries (or journalist requests) are essentially call-outs for content that journalists can use as part of their upcoming features. The way this works on the Press Loft platform is that members of our media network can submit a call-out with all of the essential information (e.g. specific themes, image types, deadlines, etc.). Once reviewed by our team, these will be then sent out for brands to respond and pitch themselves for consideration. It’s important to note that these requests are not addressed directly to any one of our clients in particular, but to everyone on the Press Loft database that matches the set criteria.
Journalists can request a broad variety of things, including:
- Products for a shopping or gift guide page
- Items for a ‘get the look’ / trend related page
- Expert testimonial from a brand to compliment a story they are writing
- Prizes for a competition giveaway to run in the magazine or on social media
- Products to loan for a photo shoot to feature in the magazine
- News on recently launched products
Now that is out of the way – here are our top tips for responding to these media enquiries:
1.) Read the request thoroughly
This seems like an obvious tip, but reading the request at least twice to make sure you have gathered all the information the journalist has stated is very important. You should normally have everything detailed in the request (type of images, deadline, subject, etc). Keep referring back to the request as you search for and download your images. Make sure you follow the journalist’s request to the letter so that you don’t bombard them with irrelevant information. If the journalist is looking for office chairs, don’t send tables! By sending irrelevant images, you might compromise your future chances of being featured.
2.) If a request is not relevant, leave it
We know it’s hard to pass on a request, but if your images don’t exactly fit the request, don’t respond.
Again, if you receive a request asking for planters, for example, don’t respond saying you don’t have planters but you have sofas! There will be plenty of opportunities in the future for your brand, you just need to be patient and keep an eye on requests. At Press Loft, we receive hundreds of media enquiries every month from top-tier publications to bloggers and influencers, so there is something for everyone.
3.) How many images do I need to send?
The amount of images you need to send depends on the request and how many relevant products you have. Sometimes, journalists might specify in the request how many images they would like. The best thing to do is download some key images, five maximum is a good number and lets them know you also have lots more if they are interested. They will then respond if they are interested in more.
If you have lots of images relevant to a particular request, don’t get ahead of yourself and send the journalist hundreds, this will only confuse and frustrate them. Just select the best five and send that instead of sending lots. You can always let them know you have more and perhaps send a couple of additional links to the products.
Remember that journalists send their requests to the network of brands on Press Loft, this is not specifically sent to you. Keeping the number of images minimal and relevant will help you get noticed.
4.) High-res and low-res images
Usually, journalists will state whether they want high-res images or low-res images to begin with. Make sure you follow their guidelines with this. If journalists request high-res images we don’t recommend sending more than five images, as the high-res will clog up their emails. Requests for low-res images however are a little more flexible (but still avoid going overboarda maximum of ten). If the journalist doesn’t state whether they would like high-res or low-res, assume they are looking for low-res suggestions to begin with and will get back to you if they want your images in high-res. Remember, don’t get carried away by sending too much, if you do have lots to showcase, tell the journalist this and send them a link to more images.
5.) Continuous requests
Press Loft has a continuous request section, this is where journalists submit a request that they may be working on monthly for the next year for example, or just to indicate that they are open to collaborate and open for suggestions.
It is important to consider that with continuous requests, journalists receive lots of pitches for this, so again, make sure you don’t send them images that don’t fit with their publication and style and make sure you don’t send more than five images. If you see that the publication is a bathroom magazine, no need to send them suggestions about kitchen accessories.
Once you have made your pitch, wait on a response from the journalist. If they don’t respond then they will not be needing your images for that feature.
6.) What else should I include in my response?
Writing a personalised message to a journalist can help. Make sure you are friendly and informative. Your subject line should have what they are asking for and the body of your email should state if you have attached high-res or low-res and why you think the products fit into their request. You should then finish the email by saying that you are happy to help with further information if they should need it.
Top Tip! We hear the same feedback from journalists time and time again, having the prices on your images is key for journalists to access all information in one go!
What is Press Loft?
Press Loft is a PR platform specialising in the home, gift and lifestyle sectors that helps thousands of brands to get their products into the press. Their PR tools allow companies to easily secure press coverage and quality backlinks for SEO by connecting with their network of 25,000+ journalists, bloggers and influencers.
Did you know that we offer a FREE trial of our PR tools (including influencer outreach) for new brands? Click here to start your free trial and join over 1,000 brands already using Press Loft for their business.