September 6, 2011

Sea Rocket Bistro on Fox 5 morning news + tips for pitching stories for TV

We love working with the hard-working crews that fuel the well-oiled machines that are San Diego TV stations. Over the years, we've gotten to know producers, reporters and camera people well, so when we bring clients on, it often feels like a mini reunion.

This morning, we had the honor of bringing Sea Rocket Bistro's executive chef/partner Chad White and Curt Louret from Ballast Point Brewing & Spirit on the Fox 5 morning show in anticipation of this Thursday's Ballast Point Beer Dinner at Sea Rocket. We'll post the segment to our press section soon but, for now, we want to congratulate both men on a terrific segment and give a big thank-you to anchor Raoul Martinez from Fox 5 and the rest of the behind-the-scenes team that made the segment a success. And, in the spirit of success, we're giving you a few tips for pitching a successful segment and what to do once it's booked:

1. Watch the show several times to ensure you're a good fit. Is your story newsy or a features story? If it wouldn't appear in the news section of a newspaper, it's probably not appropriate for nightly news, which is more news- and less features-based. When you've determined which show you may be a fit for, watch it for content and flow. Understanding the types of segments the station features will help you conceive of a segment idea that's a good fit.

2. Pitch the correct contact. Most times, it's a producer. Be sure to find the correct one for the show you have in mind.

3. Determine viewer benefits & think visually. Business owners have the tendency to explain why their product or service is great -- and it probably is, but how does it make the consumer's life better or simpler? Once you've answered this question honestly, you're ready to explain it to a producer that is probably overworked and that definitely has limited airspace to give. Gear the pitch toward the viewer, however. For instance: "Whether you're a vegetarian, a vegan or you simply love good food, cooking without meat is simpler -- and tastier -- than you think." Envision how the segment would look and lay it out so the producer can also imagine it. TV segments rely on visuals. Be visual.

4. Be brief. Yes, do.

5. Respond quickly. Once you've sent your pitch, be sure you're accessible. An opening for the next day might have just become available. Producers are busy; they need to book quickly.

6. Give the producer all they're asking for. If a producer asks for a segment about how to carve a Thanksgiving turkey with an X-ACTO knife and asks you to bring in a set of five knives and an already cooked whole turkey, please don't bring in one knife and a photo of a turkey. It's also important not to play boss. If the producer asks for a segment to be laid out a certain way, don't veer, unless you've politely asked if you can add a component.

7. Be prepared when you go on-air. Prepare your materials at least a day in advance, if possible. Be sure your clothes are clean and your hair is tidy. Shy away from white and green, unless you're a chef. Think of three things you wish to convey.

Want more tips for a successful interview? Contact us for a no-cost consultation.

About the Author

Brook Larios

Brook Larios

Brook's 14 years of professional communications experience spans newsroom reporting, national nonprofit and luxury public relations management and building a successful pr agency founded on uncommon connections and creativity. She's a lover of horses, fitness, reading, nature and good conversation. Zany and approachable, Brook prefers removing the surface rather than scratching it.