Interesting LinkedIn chatter about a recent Ragan.com article, 8 reasons PR pros shouldn’t use “media advisory” any more. The premise is that media advisory and terms like For Immediate Release are unnecessary, perhaps antiquated.
My big problem is the author’s ongoing term of “story pitch” and “news release” and “media advisory,” all of which seemed to be referenced as the same thing. They are not synonymous terms.
- Story Pitch: I write and e-mail a specific story pitch to a specific reporter at a specific publication. It’s personal, substantive (idea, sources, facts, etc.) and designed to entice the reporter into a solid story.
- News Release: I send a news release to an editor and/or reporter (and others within his or market, industry, etc.). It starts with a greeting, shares a key point or two, then directs them to the news release (below) or to a specific weblink. It usually includes “For Immediate Release” for good reason. It’s news. It’s timely.
- Media Advisory. I like what the author said about media advisories: “… save the phrase for straight forward, nuts and bolts news releases that accomplish little more than share information …” except that, well the media advisory is a … media advisory . Not a news release. Sigh. The advisory is short and sweet, provides the Who/What/When/Where/Why and support info.
Bottom line, PR pros better know the difference between a story pitch, a news release and a media advisory, and how to best communicate news, ideas and insights to editors and reporters. Twenty-five years of PR work tells me that reporters getting good ideas, newsworthy content and quality story sources don’t care if you send an e-mail with “BingaBangaBoom” in the subject or text window as long as the BingaBangaBoom relates to their readers.