PPRA “Channel Chat” Program Recap

By Brianna Rooney, Maven Communications

Prior to a major Nor’easter hitting Philadelphia, six broadcast journalists sat on a Philadelphia Public Relations Association (PPRA) panel to discuss the ever-changing media landscape and how to best share your client’s news. Find the panelists below:

  • Jim Donovan, Co-Anchor, CBS3
  • Berlinda Garnett, Producer, Fox 29
  • Tanya Husar, Managing Editor, 6ABC
  • Annette John-Hall, Keystone Crossroads Reporter at WHYY-FM
  • Andrew Kramer, General Assignment Reporter, KYW Newsradio
  • Melissa Signs, Assignment Editor, NBC10
  • Moderated by Susan Buehler, Chief Communications Officer at PJM Interconnection

With a room full of PR people eager to hear about what it takes to get your event covered on air, the panelists did not disappoint with insider knowledge, whether it was about the best time to call or story topics to pitch.

Some key takeaways from the panel are below:

  • Integrate social and traditional media – If you pitch the media and they can’t get your event on air, that doesn’t mean it’s a lost cause. News desks receive around 500 emails a day, so cutting through the clutter can be hard. Provide the reporter with the event hashtag and if it’s newsworthy, they can share on their own social platforms, which typically have a large reach.
  • Know your audience – With any pitch, you need to know your audience. Something you’re pitching to Good Day Philadelphia should be different than WHYY. Getting to know reporters and what their stations cover is very important.
  • Be Ready for Air! When you pitch the media, be ready for the reporter to say ‘yes!’ This means knowing your client’s schedule and when they’re available, understanding the topic you’re pitching, and be able to share why it’s news. Many reporters mentioned how often they ask for more information and the person who pitched them didn’t have answers.
  • Create Your Own Content – It’s always tough when reporters cannot make your event but sometimes, breaking news and weather win for coverage. A great shared takeaway was that NBC10 and Fox29 both accept video from your events. Make sure your video is clear, an iPhone is fine, and send the file via DropBox on the day of your event to make it easy for the reporters to download and use.

Thanks to all the media professionals who were on the panel for sharing information that will help us as PR professionals do our job better!

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