How to Pitch Media Using Twitter


thousands of journalists use Twitter every day to post breaking news stories, comment and share news items, ask for sources for their articles, praise colleagues’ work, or have conversations with each other

~ SHIFT Communications

PR professionals build their business on developing a strong relationship with the media. With our never-ending reliance on social media to find breaking news stories, the media relies on social media to track down trending news. Whether you're a public relations expert or small business owner or an author trying to promote your book: journalists are on Twitter, and they're constantly looking for new and interesting stories, products and people. There are some basic rules you should follow if you're going to use Twitter to pitch the media.

Dos and Don'ts to Pitch the Media on Twitter: 10 Tips from PR and Social Media Pros

1. Look professional before you start trying to make professional connections. ~ SHIFT Communications

2. Find the actual journalist, rather than the publication. ~ Ragan PR

3. Make sure it’s news. ~ PR Daily

4. Don't ask a journalist you're not following to DM you. ~ Mashable

5. Don’t abuse the word “EXCLUSIVE”. ~ PRNewser

6. It helps if the client you are pitching is on Twitter, too. ~ SPIN SUCKS

7. Understand their interests. ~ ADWeek

8. Start by explaining what’s in it for the journalist or blogger. ~ Cision

9. Personalization is key. ~ Command Partners

10. Don't pitch on Twitter - build relationships. ~ Crenshaw Communications

Free Ebook:
Media Preparation and Tip Guide

media interview tips and advice - free ebook
media interview tips and advice - free ebook

TIP: Congratulations: your pitch worked, and you have an interview with a journalist - now what? Download our free ebook: Media Appearance Preparation and Tip Guide filled with PR pro Kathryn Bechthold's expert advice for media interviews.

For More Information on How to Pitch Journalists on Social Media Chicago Tribune: Don't Strike Out With Your Social Media Pitch Social Media Today: 6 Ways to Pitch Journalists on Social Media

Kathryn Bechthold CEO Alchemy Communications
Kathryn Bechthold CEO Alchemy Communications

author: Kathryn Bechthold, Communications expert in Calgary, AB. Owner/CEO of Alchemy Communications Inc.

Want More Clicks? Optimize Your Tweets with Twitter Cards


Twitter Cards allow you to add far more content to your title and description, as well as bigger images. This means more exposure, more space to get your message across, and increased clicks to your site.

~ Kim Garst, social media expert

Do you sometimes wonder if anyone is reading your Tweets? You spend time crafting the perfect clever 140 character post... then... nothing?

Do you want more clicks? Twitter cards are a free tool that allows users to interact with your business directly from Twitter: they look like an image or an ad, attached to your post. They make your post stand out in the Twitter stream, so users are more likely to read and click. Here's an example of a post by Kim Garst using Twitter cards:

Twitter Card by Kim Garst
Twitter Card by Kim Garst

Twitter cards are your call to action: they can drive traffic to your website and grow your business, such as:

  • watch YouTube videos or SlideShare or Vines
  • sign up for an email
  • visit a website
  • read a blog post
  • download an app
  • display a full-size photo or graphic

Twitter has cards for 10 different types of user experiences including photos, apps, and videos. Statistics are proving that users like Twitter cards :

  • posts with website cards have +43% engagement.
  • lead generation cards get +42% engagement
  • tweets with rich media get +313% engagement and +52% more retweets

Twitter has cards for 10 different types of experiences including photos, apps, and videos. There are 3 different ways to install Twitter cards:

  1. add code to your website: see the Twitter cards developer page
  2. for website and lead generation cards go to the Twitter Ads Dashboard to make them (note: these are paid Twitter ads)
  3. if you have a site there are plugins to install Twitter cards, Twitter recommends 3 Twitter card plugins: Jetpack, JM Twitter Cards and WordPress SEO by Yoast

Once you've designed your Twitter card, you have to get Twitter's approval to to use the Twitter card via their Card Validator (think of it like getting Facebook ad approval). Twitter says getting card approval could take up to a week, but most users says its usually less than a day to get approval.

You still need to design compelling posts so users want to click on your Twitter card. Once you've started using Twitter cards, you can measure your success with Twitter Card Analytics.

For More Information on Twitter Cards
Social Media Today: 8 Types of Twitter Cards Business are Using
Buffer: The Everything Guide to Twitter Cards

Kathryn Bechthold CEO Alchemy Communications
Kathryn Bechthold CEO Alchemy Communications

author: Kathryn Bechthold, Communications expert in Calgary, AB. Owner/CEO of Alchemy Communications Inc,

5 Ways to Use Twitter for Your PR Campaign

Twitter for PR campaigns
Twitter for PR campaigns

Twitter just released an important update to its Retweet feature: manual Retweet with comment, or 'quote Tweet'. Quote Tweet is a useful feature to insert your thoughts or message into someone else's post: in a sense, newsjacking their Tweet. Twitter's popularity and ease of use make it a popular tool to share and get information. Crafting a meaningful Twitter post in 140 characters can be challenging: a post that is too cute or too encrypted is too easily ignored. Creating and participating in Twitter conversations is a free, friendly and strategic way to start conversations and build relationships about an event, person or product. Its easy to use Twitter for your PR campaign: but its not as easy to use Twitter effectively for your PR campaign.

How to Use Twitter as a PR Tool

1. Retweet an influencer to get on their radar

Gain visibility and support from a public figure or influencer and their followers by Retweeting their post, or Retweet with comment. When you add your personal comment to a Retweet, you build buzz and visibility: hopefully the person you're retweeting will see your retweet, as well as their followers. Your goals it get your PR campaign noticed and your message to go viral - listening to and engaging influencers including celebrities, thought leaders and media then commenting on and retweeting their posts is a decisive way to get into the conversation.

2. Embed images

PR is all about storytelling: and Twitter encourages users to share their story with words and images or videos. One or up to 4 images can be attached to any Twitter post. Your image can show words, pictures, links, hashtags - whatever you need to promote your PR campaign. Optimal Twitter image size is 880 x 440 pixels.

Note: attaching images to a Tweet uses some of the maximum 140 characters allowed per tweet.

You can also attach images to a direct message to a specific Twitter user.

3. Tag and mention other Twitter users

Your PR campaign can gain visibility and attract supporters by tagging or mentioning specific Twitter users in your posts. Tags are used when tweeting an image, mentions are in the body of the post. Not only will the person or organization you tag or mention see your post, your post will show in the feed of all their Twitter followers.

4. Monitor reputation and trends

Listening on Twitter is an easy and time sensitive strategy to track public opinion of an event, individual or brand's reputation and interactions. Real-time information provides an opportunity to intervene and head-off a potential PR problem, or to monitor public opinion in a crisis. If you're talking about your PR campaign on Twitter, but no one else is, that's your signal to reroute your campaign strategy.

5. Live reporting via #s

Hashtags (#) are a Twitter tool that to organize and track Tweets. PR can start conversations, participate in ongoing and live-report an event by creating a unique hashtag for a PR campaign. If you hold a special event, encourage all your supporters to use the event hashtag to gain visibility for your campaign.

For More Info on Using Twitter for PR Campaigns
HubSpot: How to Retweet the Right Way (With a Comment) on Twitter