Help Me Help You

Jonah Takagi - Silk Road Collection

You know that really frightful frienemy who might start a conversation, "I don't want to hurt your feelings, but I think you should know...."?  Well, she does want to hurt your feelings, but I am really just trying to help here.  

Lukas Peet, Rudi

I'm going to do a little bit of housekeeping and talk email press releases.  Now, there's going to be someone who is thinking (or commenting - likely anonymously), "You know what?  You're pretty darn lucky to be receiving press releases at all Miss High and Mighty," and, truly, I am.

Lindsey Adelman, Blow (one of my favorite lights ever)

So, I'm not complaining, I'm just pointing out a few things that could help us to partner a little easier.

Jason Nuller, Endless

Mrs. Blandings's Top Five Tips for Email PR

1.  Picture This.  If you are pitching to bloggers, images are essential.  If there is a compelling image in the email - preferably in the top portion that would show in the preview format (as opposed to opening the email) that is best.  The likelihood that I will open the email, or further, click a link to see a picture is very slim.

2.  Either know me or don't.  If you are going to include a name in the salutation of your email, please go over your database.  Years ago someone must have entered "Mrs." in the first name field and "Blandings" in the last name field of a database associated with my email.  It's not that I care or take offense, it's just when I receive an email with "Dear Mrs.," I assume that this is a humongous mailing and I am less likely to read it.  An email or release with no salutation does not bother me in the least.

3.  Party Girl.  I want to go to your event.  I really do.  Unfortunately, few of them happen in Kansas City, so I am forced to regret.  A couple of things here.  New York, is, obviously, the center of the universe. Even so, it's a good idea to put the city on the invitation if you have a national mailing list.  Secondly, I really want to respond.  I don't know the ins and outs of this, but it would be a huge help if the response could be delivered to the sending address (so "reply" would be all that stood between us) or if the reply email on the invite could be hot.  I imagine this is tricky as so many of these invites are really lovely (truly) PDFs, but it would help.  Especially if I'm doing business on my phone in the orthodontist's office.

4.  Know Thyself.  As a fellow blogger said to me the other day, "Everybody has a blog."  The upside of this is that you can hit your target so easily.  If you actually visit the site at least once.  I love sustainable, organic, green products, but that is not my gig.  You can send me your release, but as it's not my focus and it's so unlikely that it will be a good fit.  (Unless, of course, it involves a Greek key or Boxer pups or needlepoint.  Then you're in.)  It's a good idea to take a quick a look and see if the content is a match.

5.  Forgive Me.  I won't begin to tell you that I am any busier than you are, but this is not my job and I don't have a year-end review where someone sits across a desk and says, "Your response rate to blind email is unacceptable."  What I am, really, is scattered.  I have a number of people who expect things from me both big and small.  If I've overlooked a release or request, please forgive me.  If you think it was an oversight, please email me again.

Jonah Takagi, Bluff City

For those of you to whom this is completely irrelevant, I've included some of the lights from Roll and Hill's recent collections because their email newsletter was so appealing.  You can find them at the International Contemporary Furniture at the Javitz Center in New York from May 19th - 22nd and on-line here.