Minimum time with celebrity ambassadors
Begrudgingly, I declined interview time with one of my celebrity idols the other day.
Personal passions aside, it was a professional disappointment too – she’s on-brand for the title I write for, as is the product she’s fronting. The problem? I could only have 10 minutes with her.
I get why PRs offer press speed slots like this. A-listers are overloaded, access is challenging, and (some) agents can be a nightmare. And I’m sure many journos oblige and make stories out of the opportunities. I certainly have done in the past.
But now – as per my editor’s directive – it’s 20 mins minimum, or no thanks. In exchange, we offer a full-page feature interview published online. Any less than that and we can’t really scratch the surface – which results, usually, in a puff piece.
As a publicist orchestrating interviews you must have to weigh up whether it’s better to score shorter pieces of coverage but in more publications, with securing substantial pieces of coverage in fewer titles. Presumably this is dictated by your clients’ priorities.
We favour the former. Therefore, if we accept offers of insufficient time with talent, then why would things change on this front? If a celeb’s team isn’t challenged to provide more access in these instances, how are they to know differently? Ultimately, quality coverage is an outcome we’re all seeking, and we should be on the same page to get to that point.
And yes, sometimes this means missing out on featuring someone that our audience wants to read about and, in this case, that I’m desperate to encounter. But hey, perhaps it’s a blessing. You shouldn’t meet your heroes, after all.
What Bridget Thinks…
“This seasonal release on a classic foundation caught my eye with its new take on shade matching (using yellow and blue base colour theory – I was drawn to the yellow), and the quotes from make-up artists about why it’s loved by pros.”