Last week, I gave an example of the correct way to pitch to bloggers. In this post, I will show the wrong way to pitch to bloggers - learn from this person's mistakes and do not repeat them. Bees and Honey
I believe in positive posting - attracting more bees with honey and all that. Anyone can be smarmy and abusive, but if you are going to do a hit piece, I think you need to have a good reason and do your research.
The thing that really grinds my gears is that I laid out a perfect plan for pitching on Thursday. So when I got this email - not 24 hours later - I was shocked at how poorly virtually every element was handled. Click the picture to the right to read the email.
I thought I was clear the first time at the way to successfully pitch bloggers. But I guess some folks can only learn from "Do Not" instructions.
- No introduction: If she was able to get my email address, she certainly could have gotten my name.
- Wrong information: My "Clearcast Digital Media blog"? Does she mean "Comcast" or was she referring to these guys? Who knows? But clearly she does not know me.
- Marketese: If she'd read my white paper, she would have known that marketese is death. But I'm given a full serving in this email, from start to finish.
- Bad writing: In addition to the marketese, she's inconsistent with her italics, occasionally writes the authors name's in capital letters FOR NO APPARENT REASON, and also capitalizes words haphazardly. Here's a tip: If you are writing to a blogger who writes about writing, know how to write. 'Nuff said.
- No seduction: What is my incentive to go to the book's website? I'm promised "great free content and commentary" but why would I believe that based on this email? Weak.
- Zero relationship: In this email, she had the opportunity to create a connection. Relating the book's content to something I had written about would have been perfect. It would have made the email more relevant, explained why she wrote me in the first place, and showed me that she cared about my work. Instead, epic fail.
- Too general: The authors are supposedly leading experts, but who says so? Their strategies have resulted in $12B in sales, but for whom and how can I make it work for my business? What about: "Conoco Philips made one change based on these strategies and it saved them $156,723 in one quarter." Isn't that more intriguing?
These are bad mistakes to make in any email, much less one where you are writing a marketing/writing blogger. But to receive this one day after I lay out instructions for how to impress me - wow, way to demonstrate that you could not care less.
Learn the Ways of the Force
While I hate picking on this person who may be a well-intentioned junior staffer or intern, there is someone up that food chain who approved this email copy. Shame on them for not explaining the blogosphere to the sender.
I hope these examples help the rest of you to craft considerate, professional emails to bloggers you want to reach. In my mind, it is really not that difficult. But looking over this email, I guess I might be wrong.
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