Cision report: land a media relations pitch with SEO and social audience data

Cision report: land a media relations pitch with SEO and social audience data

Tailored pitches have always been the key to success in media relations. Adding SEO and social data to pitches adds huge value for time pressed journalists. Views are the most common measure of success for publishers.

The 2019 Cision Global State of the Media Report contains useful insights for media relations practitioners seeking to cut through with their pitches. I’ve read the report so that you don’t have to. Here are the headlines.

#1 Trust in the media

Attacks on the mainstream media over the past three years have led to people paying more attention to what journalists do and importantly the value they provide. Edelman reports a massive rise in news engagement. The goal of journalism in 2019 is to provide coverage so informative and reliable that people around the world are willing to pay for it. Trust has become a business model.

#2 Audience metrics drive content

Two thirds of journalists report that audience metrics have changed the way they evaluate stories. Facing pressure to drive readership, engagement and revenue, journalists are making data-driven decisions about the content they publish. Use insight about a publication and its audience as part of your pitch.

#3 Traditional metrics matter

To benchmark success, most of the journalists measure total views or readership, engagement metrics, and revenue attribution. The relative importance of each of these measures varies by country however 43% of journalists globally reported their organisation’s primary measure of success for their content is readership or viewers. Provide SEO and social insight to a journalist as part of your pitch.

#4 Lower budgets, fewer staff

Newsroom employment continues to decline. According to Pew Research, a third of large newspapers and a quarter of digital publications have suffered layoffs since 2017. For the second year in a row access to resources is one of the biggest challenges in journalism. To manage that workload, many journalists plan their stories in real time; 42% of respondents work on stories no more than a day in advance.

#5 Social media: it’s complicated

A fifth of journalists believe social networks bypassing traditional media is the biggest challenge facing journalism. However, journalists still rely on social media to stay connected to sources and real-time news and social data is also more important than ever in helping determine which stories resonated.

#6 Pitching content

71% of journalists report that news announcements and press releases are the best way to pitch branded content. Despite being more than 100 years old, the press release continues to be a journalistic staple. Invitations to events and original research reports are also a useful means of engagement. Journalists equally trust interviews, industry experts, and newswires for non-branded content.

#7 Most pitches are irrelevant

Three-quarters of journalists say fewer than a quarter of the pitches they receive are relevant. This was one of the most common themes reported by Cision. The survey suggests that media relations professionals overlook, ignore, or simply do not understand the target audience of the journalist they’re contacting. If there’s one single thing that you could do to help journalists do their jobs better, it’s to better understand a publication’s audience.

About the survey

Cision conducted its 2019 State of the Media Survey in February 2019. Surveys were emailed to the Cision Media Database. The survey collected almost 2,000 responses from across the media spectrum and in 10 different countries. Print accounted for 43.8% of respondents; broadcast 14.1%; digital 21.5%; freelance 19.1%; and social influencer 4.8%. 731 respondents were from the US; 206 were from Canada; 469 from the UK; 135 from France; 113 from Germany; 122 from Sweden; 97 from Finland; 28 from Brazil; 82 from Mexico; and 16 from UAE.

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