More round-up pitch lessons
Time for some more take outs from my Times round-up requests of the week before last.
Pitches with a USP or fun nugget got in. Alex W from Host Unusual cited “rumours that Ian Fleming wrote some of his James Bond books” in one of his proposed properties. Nice.
Oastbrook is a glampsite on a vineyard, revealed Rowena from Tourism South East; Secret Meadows sits inside a nature reserve, said VisitEngland’s Josie. El Ray’s glassy exterior flanks an old train carriage, claimed Alex T, intriguingly.
With so many self-catering properties boasting a superb kitchen, open-plan design and a
terrace for al-fresco meals, these details gave me something else to write about — a way to make an entry stand out and sound extra appealing. Essentially, they made the difference.
It’s worth having them up your sleeve when pitching for round-ups.
(USPs must be unique, however. Having nice views or a lovely pool is not a USP in my
book; not unless nowhere else in the immediate region or county has this. It’s an SP, yes,
but not a USP.)
Images are as important as ever. The Times is very image-led, and therefore it serves me to suggest properties which offer these — effectively, it lessens the chance of my having to write additional entries to accompany substitute places drafted in for their quality
photography. Therefore, whenever I checked the link to a proposed place, those with
attention-grabbing photos immediately had twice as much of a chance of being used.
We’re talking about smart design, beguiling photos of views, chic interiors, and always high-resolution without people visible. Better than links to Dropbox or Drive folders is to paste one or two images into your pitch.
Finally, if your company represents all of the UK, I’d always advise pitching somewhere in
Northern Ireland, Lincolnshire, Lancashire, Northants, etc — places which are traditionally
under-represented. In a British round-up with 20 or more entries, I’ve more or less got to
have a Northern Irish entry simply for reasons of politics and simple fairness, and yet hardly anyone pitches those. For the last two pieces, I received one Northern Irish pitch
compared to more than 40 in Cornwall.
What Richard thinks…
“Nice photos here in Hiranya’s release, and evidence of a growing trend: the hotel-hosted music festival”