Pitch Perfect

Written by Brandie Ahlgren, founder+editor | CityDog Magazine

In my former life as a PR professional, I would sometimes participate in panel discussions with editors giving tips on how to pitch them – essentially, what to do and what not to do – and I would often think to myself, “Isn’t what they’re saying obvious? Do these editors think PR people are stupid? Do they think we really need to be told how to pitch them a story idea?” Now that I wear the editor’s hat, receiving hundreds of pitches a week, I feel their pain.

Don’t get me wrong, I love my job – and I love it even more when PR people make my job easier by pitching me with an awesome story idea.

What makes an awesome story idea? It’s awesome when it is tailor-made to CityDog Magazine readers and the only way you can accomplish this is by getting to know CityDog Magazine.

So, get to know us. It's easy. Simply go to our homepage and start exploring the online articles then click over to Digital Issues and peruse through the pages. Once you've found a fit for your story idea, pitch me. And, that list of what to do and what not do -- well, here's mine:

Don’t send a generic press release. There is a difference between sending a press release and making a pitch. Think of your pitch as the story and your press release as back up material. And, here's a hint: most PR people send press releases, so it's your opportunity to stand out from the pack. It’s more work, but tailor each pitch to the publication – in other words, don’t expect me to do your job for you – tell me why your story would be a good fit for CityDog Magazine.

What makes you so special? Seriously, what makes you special? I love hearing about what's new, exciting, unique, special...so tell me!

Speaking of special, this may come as a surprise, but not all dog magazines are the same -- in fact, we are all very different. CityDog Magazine is about life and living with dogs in the West -- Seattle, Portland, San Francisco, and everywhere in between (and now East, with the launch of CityDog Baltimore). Think of CityDog as the Sunset magazine of dog magazines -- travel, food, wine, living (just with dogs).

Also, please keep in mind, public relations is not free advertising. It costs a lot of money to publish a magazine and expecting free advertising is not a way to win the hearts and minds of editors.
The relationship between editors and PR professionals is symbiotic -- we need each other -- so, let's make it a great one! Feel free to email me your pitch to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

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