I get email from public relations firms all the time. Every time I think I'm off a list, I get added to a new one. I already get a steady stream of email from clients, vendors, peers and friends in the Industry. (Keep those tips coming!) Add in social media noise and most of my day is fielding news, questions, etc. So then I get your press release as an email...
That's the first No-No. With Google Alerts, newswire, and, umm, I write for TMC which publishes all your press releases, do you really think I need you to send me a copy? (For the dense, the answer is No).
At ITEXPO East and West, Todd Keefe of FIRPR and Erik Linask of TMC work very hard to collect the requests for interviews and to schedule them with TMC's writing corps. There are usually way more requests for interviews than there are slots available. Yet every Expo we get no-shows. It happened again in LA. No word from the company as usual. This is No-No number 2. You just took a time slot from someone else. Show some respect. Do you think this disrespect will go unnoticed?
I kind of have a rule that if you piss me off, I won't ever mention your company. Unless you discover the cure for cancer.
This is an extension: don't say yes to an interview and then not do the interview.
Most PR firms have probably not read my stuff. Not even the masthead that says Icover Telecom, cable, data centers, hosting and the CLEC World. I mainly cover anything that affects the Indirect Channel. Since I started in telecom in 1999 as a telecom agent, the Channel is how I view most things. You need to know that because if the story doesn't have a CLEC or a Channel bent, I'm not that interested.
Mobile VoIP? Nope. I think it is a niche play with too many players. There's these things called unlimited plans. They are getting cheaper all the time. Why would I want to use a convoluted app to dial especially with these things called metered data plans. I'll give you if I call International a lot or if I could get HD Voice calling, but even then, ho hum. There are plenty of bloggers that write about mobile VoIP, who actually think its cool. BTW, I own a Blackberry and am not a Apple fanboy, so keep that in mind. These things are just tools to get my job done.
So know what I write about so you can tell me the angle or hook.
Often I do not know the company I am interviewing. This telecommunications industry is huge with companies merging, opening, closing. I try to keep up, but I just can't. (That's also why I just stick to my knitting; it's challenging enough to know everything in just my microcosm). It would be helpful if you could actually tell me what it is you do. A company that blew off our interview today met with me about 2 years ago. The CMO, CEO and CTO. For 30 minutes I tried to wrap my head around what they do to no avail. I'm not an idiot - depsite what some off-line commenters suggest - so if I can't grasp it in 30 minutes, how in the world will anyone else? I will say that the following year they changed their pitch to make it easier to understand but it was still vague. People need concrete. Writers and readers (and prospective customers) do not have time to figure out what you do and how it will benefit them, unless you tell them in clear, concise terms. Want an example? Hatteras Networks. See the blog post today. What do they do? Allow facilities based CLEC's to offer symmetric Ethernet to customers over copper. Pretty clear.
A cloud based provider of a voice platform for service providers is vague.
To summarize the Top 3 Way Not to Interact with a Blogger: send me press releases; be a No-Show; and be vague and have no idea what I write about.
BTW, I like interviewing company execs, even recording the interviews for podcasts, so ping me to talk telecom.
PSS: I am still trying to catch up on the interviews I did in LA, so bear with me. I was in Atlanta this week and in Phoenix next week, so November.