Would you mind some coverage in TechCrunch? Well, then you better learn how to deal with the “crunchy” guys. One of them, Mike Butcher, wide famous editor for Techcrunch in Europe, gave an interesting speech during The European Startup Festival in Vienna, last year, where he taught the audience how to pitch him and his colleagues. I think his words are very thought-provoking for people in the PR business. But also for people in general. So take a few minutes to learn how to pitch Mike Butcher.
Everyday, Mike has 3-5 news stories by 9 am, 4-5 feature ideas, write ups from trips, arranging travels, arranging meetings and tons of incoming email, sms, voice calls, skype/IM’s, Facebook IM’s / Messages, Twitter @replies, Twitter DM’s and Face-to-face chats, as far as I understood, most of them crap, like: “@mikebutcher Hey Mike, we just launched”.
Mike says: “News is a purple cow.” Which means something remarkable (please read Seth Godin’s book “Purple Cow”). Mike says: “News is about my traffic, my title, my readers – not your company.” “The fact that you exist is not news.”
I ask myself – how hard can it be!? We all know the rules, right? If you’re working with PR, I guess you’re working with news and story telling. And if you do so, – you’ve got to join the news agenda. You know that. And you also know that conversations usually beats press releases. It’s pointless to be a leech. Join the conversation instead. Find the right people that you can serve with something that really matters to them. “Network. Get noticed.” as Mike puts it.
“The man who bit the dog, is far more interesting that “the dog that bit the man”, right? So find that kind of a story, for Mike, with an tech angle and right to the point. Then pre-brief the story in one or two line email, or whatever channel, as a human being, as the one that really knows Mike’s work and agenda, and preferable exclusively. That could also be the starting point for a great professional relationship between you and Mike, which is a qualification for further pitches and contacts.
Check out Mike’s speech an presentation. And think twice before your next pitch. And let me know what you think.