Public Editor

June 17, 2014

Want media coverage of your news event? Don’t make this mistake.

I hear every single day from people pitching news story ideas to The Star’s editors. Here are some tips for maximizing your chances to get your event covered.

I got email from a frustrated musician this morning. He has a pretty impressive pedigree, but says he got no response after he sent email to the editor of The Star requesting coverage of a benefit for a musical foundation he’s involved with.

While I’m not an editor who assigns reporters, it looks to me like his event is worth consideration. And a big part of his problem with finding whom he should send his pitch to is squarely The Star’s fault. He couldn’t find contact information for an arts and entertainment editor because one key feature on KansasCity.com disappeared (temporarily) when the site underwent a redesign recently: the full newsroom staff directory. That will be coming back soon, but it’s a major omission right now.

But my emailer threw up one big obstacle himself: The email service he uses sends a follow-up email to anyone who replies to his original email, requiring that person to go to a web page and fill out a form in order to deliver the response.

Put yourself in an editor’s shoes. Media companies such as The Star get literally thousands of pitches to cover books, albums, movies, concerts and all other manners of entertainment. If you want coverage of your event, you should make it as painless as possible to get your information to the journalists you want to cover it.

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