In collecting Media Contact research for Tin Shingle member who requested it for FamilyFun, we discovered that super famous tech writer David Pogue had recently been published in FamilyFun. Being that FamilyFun is a smaller magazine, many of their writers are contributors, so the best way into a magazine like this is to get to know the contributors, their styles, and to pitch them directly with your product or service.
In perusing David's website, his writing style on Contact Us page did two things for us:
- Gave us hope that he does respond to inquiries sent through this form, and
- Told us exactly what not to do when pitching him!
Because Tin Shingle is dedicated to helping you build buzz for your business, I wanted to share what he advised, because this can be applied to every person pitching a writer (you can read all of his scenarios here on how NOT to pitch him):
- Feedback to his columns: Apparently he gets a lot of feedback here from enthusiastic readers of his articles. Every digital writer knows that (nice) comments posted to their articles aids in the value of that article. Of course, some articles get no comments, and that doesn't mean that lots of people don't read it. But comments show the community of people. So to start a relationship with David, try engaging with him politely via comment on an article you had an honest reaction to.
- Pitches to review products: David says that if you don't hear from him, it means "no" (he said it more politely). You should, I suppose, take his word on it. He claims to be very diligent with that inbox.
- Auto-responses and mail-protection thingies: I'm going to use David's words here, because they are perfect: "Email that requires me to jump through hoops to send a response. I’m referring to MailBlocks and similar services that require respondents to visit a Web page and type a code. In other words: If you don’t get my response, it’s because you’ve made it too hard!"
So there you have it. How not to pitch David Pogue. And a nice reminder that sometimes you are pitching writers directly in order to get featured in publications they write for, and you are not pitching the publication at all.