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What is a Pitch Letter?


While the press release is written in third person, the pitch letter allows for direct communication between the publicist and the journalist. It is an opportunity to pique interest, form a relationship, and persuade. Bad pitch letters begin with boring formalities or promotional hype. Good pitch letters begin with a striking opening that immediately alerts the journalist to an interesting story possibility (e.g. if you're promoting sunscreen: "In the time it takes to read this letter, seven new cases of melanoma will be diagnosed." Or, if you're an accountant: "Americans who were unaware of a new tax break needlessly paid more than $5 billion in extra taxes last year -- and time is running out for them to get that money back."

The pitch letter has one purpose: to persuade the journalist to read the attached press release. Personalize it, keep it short, sign it, and clip it to the front of your press release.

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