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How to Pitch Business Events Media

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Deanna Ting

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We move to the business tourism trades in this latest edition of our “How To Pitch” blog series. Although their circulations are smaller, these outlets reach a readership of influential meeting and incentive planners. They have the power to decide which destination will benefit from hundreds of thousands of dollars of business.

The U.S. meetings industry contributed more than $280 billion to the national economy and put another $88 billion back into the economy through federal, state and local taxes in 2012.

We spoke with Deanna Ting, managing editor at Incentive and senior editor at Successful Meetings to better understand the editorial needs of this media vertical. She provided us with so much useful information that we have split our interview into two posts.

In this first offering, we focus on her editorial needs and wants.

1. When PR Practitioners develop a pitch for you, how should it differ to one directed at a consumer publication?

No honeymoons, babymoons, and weddings, please! It’s important for PR practitioners to note that what a meetings publication needs IS different to that of our consumer travel counterparts.Pitches for meetings/incentive publications should answer one question: “How does this impact a group event?” Whatever you’re pitching needs to be applicable to groups, whether it’s a team building activity, or a convention center revamp, or new event space, etc.Also, meeting and event space statistics are important.  Please include square footage and tech capabilities, or mention specific spaces.

2. What types of story ideas pique your editorial interest and motivate you to pursue them further?

Anything that might be really unique or different, or especially suited for our industry. Case studies are also really helpful because we’re always looking for them.

3. Should PR professionals be incorporating social media ready content in their pitches to you (i.e. tweet lines, digital image galleries etc)? If so, what do you need?

Yes! Our publications rely on Twitter, so any Twitter-ready lines are helpful. Both titles have a strong presence on this social media channel. We also use Facebook and are contemplating a presence on Instagram so digital visuals are also appreciated. Easy access to high-res images is also important for the web and print editorial.

4. What influences you as to whether or not you read a pitch?

Things that grab my attention would be a pitch that focuses on groups or has a real-life case study featured. What’s new/new developments/renovations are also valuable.

5. Does social media play a role in sourcing story ideas for Successful Meetings and Incentive?

Yes. The meetings and events industry is very active on social media, especially Twitter, and often we’ll get a lot of feedback from our readers there. We’re also exploring other social media channels like Facebook, LinkedIn, and Instagram as story idea sources.

6. How important is the availability of video assets when pitching you a story idea?

They are definitely growing in importance. Every week, we post a MeetingNews Minute video which requires video assets to develop.

7. When organizing a press trip for a MICE editorial content creator, what elements should be incorporated into their itinerary that may differ from a writer on assignment for a consumer outlet?

Meeting and event spaces are the most obvious inclusion. Also, anything that involves an activity that groups could arrange. Meeting with local DMCs and the hotel DOSM is also helpful. And traveling along with other planners (our readers) provides so many incredible insights for us.

Interested in learning more on how to pitch business events media? Look out for part 2, coming soon.

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