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How to write a PR pitchA few months ago I offered some tips for ensuring emailed comments will make it into reporters’ stories. They include making sure your client answered the reporter’s questions (!), explained buzzwords and didn’t cite third-party sources that need further checking.

But what does a “good” response to a reporter’s question look like? I just happen to have an example — a piece I did for Computerworld analyzing how “software-defined everything” (IT infrastructure created and controlled by software) will affect outsourcing.

In my request for pitches, I specifically asked for sources to discuss:

  • How the rise in “software-defined everything” is affecting customers, especially their outsourcing plans.
  • How SDE affects which applications, workloads or business processes customers outsource.
  • Specific, actionable recommendations about which applications or workloads are best or least suited to “software-defined” environments?
  • And other trends customers should be aware of.

Fail #1: The Purely Self-Serving Pitch

“Bob. The movement toward IT outsourcing has spawned the (SDE) market. Service providers need to be able to customize their networks and deliver policy-based networking in order to meet customer demand, and (SDE) provides that capability. **** can comment on the role of (SDE) in enabling IT outsourcing…”

Did the PR pro explain how his client could answer my questions? No. Did he promise his client would talk about anything except how great his product or service was? No. Did I interview his client? No.

Fail #2: The Kinda Self-Serving Pitch

“****, CTO and co-founder of ****, a provider of Network Security as a Service, can talk about why he feels SD-WAN, in particular, is a short-sighted approach to solve network connectivity issues. For example, (he) argues that the cost of deploying SD-WAN to manage MPLS/Internet traffic would be better spent cracking the “middle mile” challenge. Further, (he) believes that a software-based approach to networking and security will make it easier and more cost-effective to manage.”

Again, this response tells me much more about what the client wants to promote (Network Security as a Service) than answering my questions. In the very last sentence, the pitch begins to touch on what I’m writing about, but doesn’t make the direct link to outsourcing I need. Again, I passed.

Success #1!: Answers

Hi, Bob.

The below response is from ****, co-chair of the ****. Let me know if this is along the lines of what you were looking for and if you would like to connect…

1) How the rise of “software-defined everything” is affecting customers’ IT plans in general, and their outsourcing strategies in particular. Response: Enterprise IT leaders see (SDE) as a core part of their strategy to reduce cost and improve agility improvement strategy. Every CIO is now examining if a cloud-first, partner-first approach is the best for their organization.

2) How “software-defined everything” affects which applications, workloads or business processes customers are outsourcing? Response: When application infrastructure is software based it becomes much easier to have supply chain and outsourcing partners take over tasks.  SDE opens the door for nearly every enterprise function to be outsourced.

3) Specific, actionable recommendations about which applications or workloads are most or least suited to “software-defined” environments. Response: Most Fortune 500s have legacy apps whose cost to port to a new infrastructure would be very high.  In those specific cases it’s better to port the data to a new cloud app.

4) And, of course, what upcoming trends or market developments customers should be on the lookout for. Response: One of the most exciting areas…is Software Defined Perimeter (SDP).  SDP allows enterprise to distribute workloads globally yet maintain full access control to applications, data and infrastructure for employees and partners.  Subsequently SDP enables SDE to happen.

I wound up interviewing this client, who turned out to be a key source for my story. Not only did he show he could address the questions, the specificity of his answers told me a phone conversation would be time well spent. He even introduced a new topic (software defined perimeter) that I hadn’t paid enough attention to before.

Next time a reporter asks for sources for a story, ask them for three or four sample questions, and make sure your client can answer them. If not, push back with hard questions until they do have something to say. If they don’t, tell them to pass on the interview – or at least not be shocked if they don’t wind up being quoted.

Author: Bob Scheier
Visit Bob's Website - Email Bob
I'm a veteran IT trade press reporter and editor with a passion for clear writing that explains how technology can help businesses. To learn more about my content marketing services, email bob@scheierassociates.com or call me at 508 725-7258.

Nailing Quotes for Reporters

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editorial calendarsCongratulations – a reporter has agreed to interview one of your clients for a story. The bad news: Your client suddenly got too busy for an interview, but will answer emailed questions.

You probably review your client’s answers before passing them on to the reporter. But based on my recent experience, some PR pros aren’t looking for the right things – or not looking closely enough.

Check this “to-do” list to maximize your client’s chances of being quoted.

Did they actually answer the question?

You’d be amazed (or maybe not) at how many answers aren’t really answers. They’re discussions, musings, self-evident problem statements or thinly disguised marketing claims. Real answers have a “yes,” “no” or clearly defined “It all depends” statement.

If I ask “Is cloud computing safe for medical records?” don’t tell me “The safety of patient information in the cloud is an issue any responsible enterprise will need to consider carefully.” Instead, give me examples of how to tell when it is or isn’t safe, or examples of safe/unsafe data.

Did you spell out all acronyms and explain all terms?

One recent response said “(IT) automation has the inherent risk of creating a `black box’.”  It never described what the client meant by “black box” or what the risk is. I have a pretty good idea what they meant, but in an email (unlike an interview) I can’t easily clarify it. If I need to start another email thread to ask, under deadline, it cuts your chances of being quoted.

The same goes for acronyms, as in: “CNCF and other communities provide reference architectures…” If you told me this was “the Cloud Native Computing Foundation” an open source standards effort” I’d be much more likely to include it.

Did you attribute the response to a specific person with a title, not an amorphous organization?

Editors insist their reporter’s quote people, especially for in-depth, advice-oriented features.

Did you spell check the reply?

I know auto correct makes stupid mistakes, and that your client is in a rush. But sloppy grammar errors make me doubt the rest of the response as well.

Did you provide a three to six word description of your client so the writer can position them in the story?

Make sure these are short and specify whether your client sells hardware, software or services. Think “cloud security services provider” or “Salesforce configuration services provider.” Avoid vague, marketing-driven statements like “Acme Solutions helps enterprises worldwide maximize the value of their sales teams.”

Did you avoid stories, quotes, or examples from third parties?

“A 2016 Gartner report (quoted in InfoWorld) showed demand for data scientists will rise 20.7 per cent per year between 2016 and 2020.” This forces me to check if your client got the number right and if I or they have the right to reuse that figure. I also can’t quote a report in a competing publication. Better approach: Provide a link to only publicly accessible reports so I can cite them accurately, easily and with confidence.

Did you edit for clarity and conciseness?

Not everything has to be a super sound bite, but help your client by crisping up their writing. Here’s one example from Eric Turnquist, senior director of information technology at network monitoring and it management vendor Ipswitch, (not a client of mine.) My question was whether system administrators are still needed in a world of DevOps (combining development and operations to speed applications to market.)

“Traditional systems administrator skills will still be needed. There’s usually tribal knowledge around legacy systems – people that know the old systems because they were here when they were built – that is tough to replace. Everything hasn’t been completely migrated from those old systems…now you’re stuck with it and need folks with traditional skills to use that technology, or to finish migrating from it. Knowledge of traditional systems and the skills to use them will always be in demand for this reason.”

Do you review your clients’ responses to emailed reporters’ questions? If you push back for better answers, do they listen?

Author: Bob Scheier
Visit Bob's Website - Email Bob
I'm a veteran IT trade press reporter and editor with a passion for clear writing that explains how technology can help businesses. To learn more about my content marketing services, email bob@scheierassociates.com or call me at 508 725-7258.

You Want The Case Study That Google Got

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how to create detailed case studiesIn the past, I’ve ranted about what vendors leave out of their case studies, what they need to make them great, and how much of your “secret sauce” you should reveal in them.

But rarely do I see a case study that is so good it sets the bar for the industry. It involves Spotify switching from its own data centers to Google to host its streaming music service. Published in the form of a blog post from Spotify, it goes far beyond the usual “apple pie and motherhood” generalities to describe specifically why Spotify chose Google over other cloud providers.

Maybe this level of detail results from what sort of a discount Spotify got. More likely it has to do with an engineering-centric culture at Spotify that led them to share the technical details behind their infrastructure growth in gleeful detail.

But instead of wondering how this case study came about, let’s talk about what makes it so good and how you can try for the same level of detail with your customers.

Why They Choose Google – Specifically

In its blog post announcing the shift, Spotify said:

What really tipped the scales towards Google for us…has been our experience with Google’s data platform and tools. Good infrastructure isn’t just about keeping things up and running, it’s about making all of our teams more efficient and more effective, and Google’s data stack does that for us in spades… (f)rom traditional batch processing with Dataproc, to rock-solid event delivery with Pub/Sub to the nearly magical abilities of BigQuery, building on Google’s data infrastructure provides us with a significant advantage where it matters the most.

Note that Spotify went beyond euphemisms such as “enhancing efficiency” or “end to end solution” to talk specifically about how Google helps them cut costs and improve the streaming experience for their users. It also mentioned specific Google  tools. While the post could have been more specific about how those tools helped, it’s already head and shoulders above most case studies.

Questions to ask your customers to get similar results include:

  • What specific products or services from other vendors did you consider besides ours?
  • For each of our offerings you chose , describe the specific benefits (such as lower cost, higher performance, greater ease of use) that drove your choice, with at least one example of how we were better in each area.
  • What strategic aims or needs (such as optimizing use of your infrastructure or assuring a great customer experience) drove your purchase decision? Please provide an example of how each of our products or services helps you reach these high-level objectives.

Honesty – Painful Honesty

In its more detailed “deep dive” technical blog post,  the Spotify team also discussed frankly what they don’t like among Google’s tools and services. It found, for example, that the Google Cloud Deployment Manager was too difficult to use, leading it to build its own  Spotify Pool Manager to more easily spin up new servers as needed.

Admitting your own products aren’t the absolute ideal fix for every customer, regardless of their needs, takes courage. Standing by graciously while one of your customers does so ain’t easy either.  But the smart, and ethical, product managers I talk all the time are the first to know, and admit, when one of their solutions isn’t a good fit for a specific customer. Just imagine the credibility you get by being as honest, and as technical, as Spotify is when talking about Google.

Sweat the Details

The common theme here is the importance of details in making a case study come alive. Push your customers to explain what they mean by jargon such as “transformation” or generalities such as “agility.” Digging into specifics helps tell your story, and may even give you added insight into your client’s needs for follow-on sales.

 

Author: Bob Scheier
Visit Bob's Website - Email Bob
I'm a veteran IT trade press reporter and editor with a passion for clear writing that explains how technology can help businesses. To learn more about my content marketing services, email bob@scheierassociates.com or call me at 508 725-7258.

Why “Digital” Means Nothing, and Everything

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We're getting wicked digital now.

We’re getting wicked digital now.

The more enthusiastically people use jargon, the less they understand it.

Judging by how often I see “digital” and “digitization” no one has a clue what it means.

Digital means, of course, the representation of information as ones” and “zeros.” A 1959 IBM 7000 series mainframe is just as “digital” as a Nest smart thermostat or an Uber reservation – or a telegraph from the 1830s (think “dots” and “dashes” rather than “ones” and “zeros”.)

Dig a little deeper, such as this definition (on Dictonary.com) and you come closer to what people are trying to say: “,,,pertaining to, noting, or making use of computers and computerized technologies, including the Internet.”

Or try this, from a leading market researcher:  “Digital business is the creation of new business designs reached by blurring the digital and physical worlds. It connects people, businesses and things to drive revenue and efficiency.”

Sorry, none of that is remotely new either. Connecting “…people, businesses and things to drive revenue and efficiency” was why airlines built computerized reservation systems in the 60s, we glommed onto local area networks in the 80s, Web commerce in the 90s and mobile and social applications in the 2000s.

But people will insist on using “digital” and the related “digitize” because it means something to them — actually, multiple things. And that’s where we mess up as marketers.

The Eight Flavors of Digital

From my work with clients, I see “digital” spanning at least eight real, meaningful technology and societal trends:

  • The anywhere, anytime nature of mobile, led by smart phones and mobile apps but extending to wearables.
  • The delivery of applications, data and other services from the cloud rather than internal data centers. (That’s what one research group meant when they referred to “Applications Transformed to Digital” as if all applications aren’t already digital.
  • Social: The creation and sharing of content by customers, which can be tapped to track their needs or product perceptions or encourage their engagement with your brand.
  • The Internet of Things: Ranging from cars and smart homes to industrial equipment to health care and fitness devices.
  • Big Data: Mining insights from mass volumes of data generated by devices and things to uncover hidden trends, customer needs and opportunities for cost reduction and efficiency.
  • Everything as code: Just as VMware abstracts physical servers into code files, using software to present networks and storage as code, making it easier to reconfigure and the scale IT “plumbing” as needed.
  • Skills as a service: Using the Web to tap global talent pools on demand.
  • The consumerization of IT: The need to meet demands from customers and employees for applications and services that are as easy to use as Uber or Facebook.

Color Us Confused

With all these potential game-changers to talk about (and more I’m sure I missed a bunch) it’s no wonder marketers throw up their hands and call it all “digital.” Here’s why that doesn’t work.

Each of these trends pose massively different challenges and massively different opportunities for your customers. If they respond to your “digital” pitch with an “Internet of Things” challenge and you’re really selling social technology, you’ve wasted each other’s time.

Maybe it’s OK to grab prospects with the shiny promise of “digital” this, that, or the other thing, get them talking about their needs and then figure out if you can sell your me-too network management or software testing tool as a “digital transformation solution.”

In the short run, this might work, if you don’t mind spouting nonsense to make a living. In the long run, customers who waste hundreds of thousands or millions of dollars on poorly-defined “digital” initiatives will lose their jobs — and remember who misled them.

If you think I’m just being too up-tight about all this, ask your CEO, CMO, CIO and top two sales people to define what makes your solution “digital” in one sentence. Do their answers match? And if they don’t, does it matter?

Author: Bob Scheier
Visit Bob's Website - Email Bob
I'm a veteran IT trade press reporter and editor with a passion for clear writing that explains how technology can help businesses. To learn more about my content marketing services, email bob@scheierassociates.com or call me at 508 725-7258.

Why This Pitch Worked, In Six Steps

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best practices case studyHaving recently complained about four sins to avoid while pitching stories, it’s only fair to highlight this recent press release that got it right in six important areas.

Here’s the release, along with (in italics) my take on what they did right. (FWIW, neither Sabrina Sanchez of The Ventana Group (who sent this on) or their client, Condusiv Technologies, are or have been clients of mine.

  1. “Hi Bob. As organizations virtualize, they face performance bottlenecks—finding themselves in an expensive business model of reactively buying more flash or spindles to satisfy application performance challenges.” (The pitch quickly gets to the new pain point they’re describing, and makes clear they’re talking specifically about storage so I can tell if it fits in my beat.)
  2. “However, there is another way to address this problem. With software intelligence tailored for virtual environments, organizations can now drive more performance out of the infrastructure they already have—increasing the productivity of applications and people at a fraction of the cost of additional hardware.” (The pitch quickly and clearly describes what they are offering that is new, as well as its technical and business advantages. Makes it easier for me to decide whether to keep reading and follow up.)
  3. “Most organizations already have 3-4 GB of available DRAM per VM. That may not sound like a lot of capacity for caching purposes, but when you’re talking about the fastest storage media possible that is exponentially faster than SSDs and sits closer to the processor than anything else, it’s the perfect place and size to satisfy problematic I/O that dampens overall performance the most – small, random I/O.” (Having set up the problem, they keep me on the hook with a progressively deeper technical set-up for their solution. Seems like they have a story to tell – I’ll keep reading.)
  4. “Condusiv is tackling this problem today with a software only approach leveraging the infrastructure enterprises already have in place.” (Badda-bing, badda-boom – in eleven words, they describe what they offer and why it’s good. I got, and they didn’t force me to read too far to get it.)
  5. “More than 2000 customers are seeing dramatically improved performance in their Tier I applications such as SQL, Oracle, Exchange, VDI, backup, EHR/EMR (like MEDITECH), CRM (Salesforce), web servers, Business Intelligence (BI), backup applications, file servers, and more.” (Ah, my next question answered – “Do you have customers?” Not only is the answer “yes,” but they describe the use cases so I understand the broad impact of their offering, and pick up any fits with other areas (such as CRM or health care) I cover.)
  6. “Would you be available this week or early next week to get an update from Condusiv and their upcoming June 30th I/O Optimization software announcement along with customers that are able to validate the results?” (This isn’t an offer for a vague “company update” but a product announcement whose importance they have explained – along with, again, an offer of customer names.)

If I were covering the virtualization or storage space and needed a good, forward-looking story with a news hook, this would be a great candidate. Looking forward to seeing more great pitches from you all

Author: Bob Scheier
Visit Bob's Website - Email Bob
I'm a veteran IT trade press reporter and editor with a passion for clear writing that explains how technology can help businesses. To learn more about my content marketing services, email bob@scheierassociates.com or call me at 508 725-7258.

Avoid These Four Pitching Sins

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tips for pitching editors Forbes recently reported that 68% of reporters are unhappy with the pitches they get from corporate communications and PR types.

Here are four pitching sins I see almost every day, with my suggested improvement in italics.

Sin #1: Vagueness

“Hi, Bob –

I wanted to touch base to see if you would be interested in a company update briefing with *****, the leading provider of next generation ****** solutions. ***** We have an upcoming announcement and would love to brief you…”

Instead tell me what you’re announcing, how it’s new and different and why it’s important to the customer. For example, “Next week, we are announcing a service that slashes and cost and complexity of securing mobile devices through a new, lightweight encryption protocol. We’re also announcing a distribution deal with AT&T to spur adoption…” 

Sin #2: Tech for Tech’s Sake

 “**** has announced the availability of its much anticipated new rugged handheld…with better overall performance with an astonishingly bright display, an extra-long battery life, enhanced GPS capabilities, and rugged IP68 construction.”

Better, cheaper, better…yadda yadda yadda. This sounds more like a bill of materials than an exciting story about what readers can do with the new device. How about “For years, roughnecks in North Dakota’s oil country have struggled to place rush orders for critical drilling equipment due to dim screens, inaccurate GPS readings and failing batteries on their handhelds. Soon, their orders will arrive more quickly and drilling will go easier due to the ease of use, brighter screen, extended battery life and enhanced GPS capabilities of our new…”

Sin #3: Good for us, we’re at a trade show.

“Joe Doakes, CEO of Transformative Solutions, has been selected to speak at The Global Transformation Forum on “The Role of Software-Defined Networks in Enabling Next Generation Solutions in the Internet of Things.” Transformative Solutions will also be displaying at booth #422 in the Hotel Mediocre…”

And I care…why? Wait until you’ve drafted his speech (and he approved it) so your pitch can summarize what he will say and why it matters to customers or the industry. Even better: How about a link that will send me his presentation after the speech, making it easier for me to write about it? Or even a link to a video of his speech so I can help it go viral if I find it compelling? 

Sin #4: Bearing false witness.

One virtualization vendor sent an email promising “Five tips for evaluating software-defined storage.” They included:

  1. Does Software-Defined Storage work?

“Yes. Convergence of compute and storage and software-defined storage has been field-proven in leading companies…”

  1. Does Software-Defined Storage make sense for me?

“…there are few IT environments where these benefits are not desirable.”

  1. Am I capable of implementing Software-Defined Storage?

“Software-defined storage is simple to implement and configure…in most cases, a single administrator can manage both compute and storage resources.”

  1. Can I use my existing storage and servers to deploy Software-Defined Storage?

“Yes. Software-defined storage solutions should seamlessly co-exist with the existing infrastructure…”

Sounds like a not-very thinly disguised product pitch, doesn’t it? If your subject line promises “honest” advice you have to provide it to get the interest you want. Answer real questions such as “Is software-defined storage a good idea for a company that lacks a dedicated storage admin?” “Is everyone really capable of implementing it equally well?” Are the standards mature enough to avoid vendor lock-in?”

 And if you’re really serious about reforming your pitches, check out these five phrases that drive most editors to the “delete” key.

Author: Bob Scheier
Visit Bob's Website - Email Bob
I'm a veteran IT trade press reporter and editor with a passion for clear writing that explains how technology can help businesses. To learn more about my content marketing services, email bob@scheierassociates.com or call me at 508 725-7258.

Why Won’t Vendors Come Out and Fight?

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bigstock-Cartoon-kid-suffering-from-bul-33837272What do your clients do when they’re accused of doing wrong? A) Present a detailed, convincing defense? B) Pretend they didn’t hear the question? C) Talk around the issue with marketing jargon?

The answers, according to my recent experience in a story on software pricing, are B) and C).  A number of  consultants who negotiate software contracts told me that major software vendors are sneaking price hikes by customers with ever more complex contracts, terms and conditions.

None of the four household-name software vendors to whom I sent detailed, specific questions about their pricing policies gave a convincing response.

Two never replied. A third declined comment. The fourth answered with bland marketing-speak and a link to a company blog post announcing a new, supposedly simplified licensing program. But the blog post, like the emailed responses, was mostly marketing jargon.

Even worse, the only comment on the post was a customer complaining that the vendors licensing agreements were hard to understand. In other words, the blog post the PR person referred me to hurt their client’s case.

If you’re actually trying to bamboozle major customers and can’t admit it, fair enough and  good luck. But I suspect there are other, more convincing answers vendors could give. For example:

  • “Yes, our licenses are becoming more complex, but that’s because our customers’ environments are becoming more complex. We’re trying to reach a balance between a fair return on our development and support costs and not gouging our customers. Let us explain the clauses you asked about…”
  •  “We recently changed our virtualization licenses because, with our software running on more physical platforms than we ever expected, our support costs were going through the roof. Virtualization is also putting more demands on our development staff to support features like dynamic migration. We need a price hike to meet these costs and maintain our margins.”
  •  “Yes, we are claiming the right to charge users of third-party apps who access our ERP application. And, yes, when we ask for those charges seems a little arbitrary right now. But we’re working with customers to figure out when it’s appropriate. Here are the questions we’re grappling with…”

Now, let’s look at the downside of refusing to respond or giving canned answers:

  • The reader hears only the charges against you, not your explanation.
  • You lose the opportunity to explain your position and make sure the reporter understands it.
  • You lead the reporter, and reader, to assume you have something to hide.
  • You leave more space in the story to talk about the accusations, not your responses.

I can hear you nodding now and saying “I agree, but I can’t get my boss/clients to listen!” If this is true, what would it take to convince your boss or client to fight back when things get ugly?”

Author: Bob Scheier
Visit Bob's Website - Email Bob
I'm a veteran IT trade press reporter and editor with a passion for clear writing that explains how technology can help businesses. To learn more about my content marketing services, email bob@scheierassociates.com or call me at 508 725-7258.

Government Shutdown? Try Editorial Shutdown

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how to handle customer reviews of trade press stories This week, a bunch of intelligent, well-meaning people managed to waste a lot of time and wind up frustrated.

No, I’m not talking about the government shutdown. (Remember, I said “intelligent and well-meaning people.”)

I’m talking about a smaller logjam you’ve probably all run into. It’s the question of whether, and how, a reference customer could review their quotes for a story in a trade publication. Because neither I, nor the customer, nor the PR firm involved was specific enough about what sort of review the customer would get, all three of us ended up spinning our wheels for no reason.

How We Got Here  

Here’s how it played out: The PR firm for a vendor put me in touch with an insightful, informed user at a prominent company. We had a great conversation, at the end of which he asked if he could review his comments before publication.

I checked with my editor, who said it was OK to send just the comments I would use, but not the entire story. So I spent an hour or so reviewing the source’s comments, pulling out and cleaning out what I thought usable, and sent them to him.

He replied that he and his internal teams needed to see the entire story to understand the points of view, how I was positioning the user’s company, what other sources I would quote, and “the context where the quotes would be used.”

While the user has generously offered to run at least one quote by his internal review process if I can put it in context, I (and the user, and the PR firm and vendor) won’t get nearly the value out of the interview we all should.

One Editor, Please

Sure, the user is right that context matters.  By clever positioning, a writer can make even an accurate quote make a customer look bad. But letting a source, in effect, edit the full written draft of a story opens unmanageable can of worms.

Suppose, for example, the user made an entirely valid point about the shortcomings of virtual private networks. Their legal department might say that implies their company’s security is weak and the comment has to go, even if it was accurate and presented in context. Or, how about if their PR department didn’t like the fact we quoted one of their competitors (again, accurately) in a way that made the competitor look like it had a competitive edge? How about if an analyst made a provocative prediction in paragraph four that made the customer, quoted in paragraph five, fear they’d be associated with something so negative?

Imagine the back and forth negotiations it would take to satisfy both the PR and legal teams in this one customer. Now, multiply that by the dozen or more sources I might quote in a story. Like the government, the editing process would pretty much shut down. What’s worse, once everyone sanitized and prettified their statements so no one could possibly take offense, the story would put readers to sleep and say nothing.

Can’t We All Get Along?

I’ve found a useful compromise (if my editors will go for it) is to read back direct quotes over the phone, with a verbal general description of where the quote fits in the story. For example: “In this section I describe the challenges of e-mail archiving, and this quote illustrates the pros and cons of deduplication.” That give the source a comfort level for what they’ll say and the context for it, without giving their legal and PR teams fishing rights to find other potential problems.

At the very least, it’s up to PR firms to ask reference customers exactly what level of spoken or written review they or their teams will require of quotes used in stories, and to make the reporter aware of those requirements before scheduling an interview.

Otherwise, you might find yourself compared to — horror of horrors — a member of Congress. Let me know what’s worked for you in avoiding quote review gridlock.

Author: Bob Scheier
Visit Bob's Website - Email Bob
I'm a veteran IT trade press reporter and editor with a passion for clear writing that explains how technology can help businesses. To learn more about my content marketing services, email bob@scheierassociates.com or call me at 508 725-7258.
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