In the hot seat:
Sally Peck: Education and Careers Editor at The Telegraph
- Sits on the Features desk.
- Writes or commissions a story a day for the Telegraph website.
- Weekly meeting to pitch stories to the Weekend editor: Monday 3pm.
- Weekly meeting to pitch Travel stories: Tuesday around 1pm.
- Monday is the best day for pitching to her.
- Writes a weekly parenting newsletter on Mondays.
- Likes to meet PRs in the morning for a coffee on Mondays and Wednesdays. When meeting, likes a targeted pitch not just presenting your clients.
- Doesn’t go to big PR events.
Telegraph Team/The week:
- Pieces must be filed a week before publication. If you want to pitch for a specific weekend, you must do it at least two weeks in advance.
- Wednesday deadline for the Saturday section.
- Friday deadline for the Sunday section.
- Thursday is press day for travel.
- Price is not a huge factor in the commissioning process: Telegraph readers are wealthy.
- Online readers are younger than print readers. The difference between the two audiences is worth considering when pitching. Sally suggests pitching specifically to online or print, but not necessarily both.
- Main competitors are the Times or The Daily Mail.
- Think creatively about images, make them different. Dropbox links only.
- Online pictures MUST be landscape.
- When pitching, pitch to one person. Otherwise the team all pitch the same story in the meeting.
- Exclusives: very important. Much more likely to run a story if it hasn’t been featured elsewhere. Particularly keen on book extracts.
- The product needs to be up and running – fully complete. If it’s not established, they will not review or cover.
- Subject line in the email should be the headline of the story you are selling.
- Prior to pitching, search The Telegraph website to find out what has been written about the subject in the past. If it hasn’t been done recently, great, but is there something new you could add?
- Tailor emails to Sally. Demonstrate you’ve done your research: find out what she likes and writes about, have a clear idea of where in the paper your story would sit.
- Dogs and children-related stories are a big hit.
- In charge of the children’s Christmas gift guide.
- Doesn’t like plastic or gender specific toys.
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