Each month, ZDnet enterprise technology reporter Rachel King highlights (or maybe I should say low-lights?) a particularly awful pitch from a public relations professional. I am a fan of columns like this one because it keeps PR people earnest. A little for shame for representing the field in a laughable manner is completely acceptable.
This month, though, I don’t really understand King’s issue with the pitch.
Chatwing is a widget “specializing in delivering real-time communication at any given time,” and a review from anyone writing for ZDnet would obviously be a big win for the company. To catch the attention of a reporter that is presumably inundated with pitches over the course of any given day, Chatwing’s PR opted to send snail mail as opposed to email. In a digital world like ours, a package can really break through the noise.
They sent the T-shirt pictured below, a mock-up of the service provided by Chatwing. King was very “creeped out” by the use of her own image on the shirt.
It’s possible that Rachel and I simply have different expectations of online privacy. But then again, she is a journalist for a tech publication – and journalists aren’t exactly trying to cover their identity. As someone that researches the best targets to send a pitch and press release, it is commonplace to find images of countless reporters – on social profiles, Google and even on the outlet’s website.
I am worried that this is a disconnect between journalist and PR practitioner.
What do you think?