Their time and attention was much in demand so woe betide you if you didn’t have a good story to give them in return for their food and drink. Of course, this was pre-digital when the whole PR industry was based on developing and nurturing relationships with influential journalists.
With the arrival of email and integrated technology, everything changed. Journalists who’d previously received just a few quality press releases and story ideas, were immediately bombarded with hundreds – sometimes thousands – of press releases and story pitches every day. They were tough times for journos and PRs alike because became increasingly difficult to cultivate relationships – journalists who were working with less resources were pushed for time and had less inclination to fritter away on ‘business’ lunches, while PR people struggled to be heard among an increasing sea of competing activity.
Despite the challenges, we never lost sight of the value of maintaining good relationships with journalists. It’s not rocket science. It boils down to having a good story and being prepared to work with them on a story so it fits their editorial agenda. Our hard-earned reputation for reliability has seen journalists coming to RMS time and time again because they know they can trust us to provide relevant, timely and original commentary when they need it.
In fact, one of our colleagues has been invited to London by a national journalist who wants to say thank you for her assistance on a particularly challenging story he was writing. Naturally, she’ll be using the opportunity to talk about several of our clients over the lunch table … some things don’t change!