I’ve been batting away Christmas gift pitches for a good four months now. They begin in earnest in June, when early birds hope to bag a slot in the long-lead monthlies. Why such monthlies still work to a production schedule born out of the days of typesetters and hot-metal presses, I’ll never understand, but that’s maybe a bit off topic here.
What’s more relevant is the need to distinguish between monthlies and newspapers. I haven’t given any thought to Christmas since Boxing Day, so basically, if you’ve been sending me Christmas gift pitches up until now, you’ve been wasting your time. I might have said thank you, I’ll keep it on file, but I was only trying to be nice. I’m afraid they’ve been lost in the ether.
I will start getting more interested over the next month, so now is the time to make contact. Don’t worry if you can’t establish who is looking after a specific gift guide (ours tend to be dashed off at the last minute when a slot appears and we all pitch in with our ideas) so just send pricing details, cut-out images, samples if appropriate, to whoever you have the best working relationship with.
Most importantly, your product needs to look good on the page and to come across like a thoughtful gift that the sender went to great trouble to source. If it is the kind of supermarket buy you’d palm off on a relative you don’t know well (bottles of Baileys, tins of biscuits, etc) you ain’t getting no thank you letter from me.