How to Pitch: Chris Fisher, Producer, CP24 Breakfast
July 25, 2017
We spoke with Chris about CP24’s position in the Canadian media landscape, and the many ways that PR professionals can work on their craft when approaching the popular television show:
CP24 engages more than 1 million viewers each day. What is it about its content that draws such a large audience?
CP24 provides all the essential information you and your family need to get out the door in just 10 minutes. Tuning in at any time, you get local weather, local traffic, top news and a little fun! Our mandate is “live” so we show as many live shots as we can to stay as current as possible. Viewers know that if they are tuning in to CP24, they will get the latest breaking information at any time of day.
When publicists pitch you a travel/tourism-related story idea, what three things should they consider before contacting you?
We aren’t a lifestyle-focused channel, so we don’t really do a lot of travel/tourism pieces. I produce the Breakfast show, and here’s what we do:
- We find that our viewers respond more to giveaways than to a spokesperson coming on the show. We have our hosts play games and get the viewers involved – it’s an interactive experience. Our hosts excel at delivering talking points provided by a destination marketing organization.
- Know our show. I can’t tell you the number of pitches I get where I can tell the publicist pitching has never or rarely watched the show. We have been on the air for 10 years now, and there are things we do and don’t do. Just watching for a week will help give an idea of what we are looking for. Don’t pitch just for the sake of pitching.
- Don’t be wordy. Get to the point. I can receive up to 50 pitches a day! I don’t have time to read paragraphs, so if I’m confused after the first three sentences or the pitch is not getting to the point, I will stop reading and delete it. We are busier than ever, so it is in everyone’s best interest to be brief, be clear and put the key information up front.
What types of story ideas excite you personally – and motivate you to pursue them further?
We all love viral stories. Meeting the people behind a viral story is exciting! It is tough to know how to contact them as it’s often regular people, not those in the television business. But it’s really cool to see these stories come from those who just happen to catch a moment from their life that has gone viral.
I also like story ideas with great giveaways, or story angles with a household name like an actor or singer.
What has been your most memorable travel/tourism assignment?
My experience is remaining in studio while doing trip giveaways. We have done Ireland, Jamaica, Tofino, England and Greece. It’s always a lot of fun to make someone’s day, and these are always big with our audience.
Where do you like to travel? And where are you off to next?
I have recently traveled to New York City and California. I have always wanted to travel to England, Italy and Japan. I have nothing scheduled outside of Ontario, and I know that I don’t travel as much as I should, but let’s see what amazing destinations could come up in the near future!
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