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Sep 12, 2008
Interview

PR Interview: How to Pitch Ideas to Welcome Magazine: Reach 25,000 Hospitality Executives

SUMMARY: Want to spend some time with C-suite executives for hotels, restaurants, and casinos? Toss a pitch at Jill Rose, Editor-in-Chief of Welcome, a hospitality-focused magazine launching soon. As a start-up editor, Rose is hungry for ideas; she is interested in everything that appeals to hospitality execs. Match her editorial agenda with your pitches.
Contact Information

Jill Rose
Editor-in-Chief
Welcome
900 Cummings Center, Suite 222-T
Beverly, MA 01915
978-232-9494
Jrose(at)redcoatpublishing(dot)com
http://www.redcoatpublishing.com/content/view/19/41/


Background

Rose helped launch Red Coat Publishing’s first magazine, American Executive, in 2003. She was also involved in launching and editing two other publications, Inside Healthcare and Retail Merchandiser. Before moving to Red Coat Publishing, Rose edited the U.S. edition of The Manufacturer for three years at Conquest Business Media. She’s been in B-to-B trade publications her entire career.

Circulation and Readers

Welcome has a controlled circulation of about 25,000 nationwide. Readers are not paid subscribers. They are handpicked executives at medium-size to larger hospitality companies, including hotels, restaurants and casinos. The free magazine is sent to them automatically each quarter.

Readers are C-suite executives and directors just below the C-suite.

Editorial Coverage

Red Coat Publishing is launching this magazine because “there’s not a lot of information at a high level for these executives,” Rose says. Welcome will cover business strategies for hospitality executives who run hotels, restaurants and casinos. Those strategies include best practices in marketing, technology, finance, legal, and employee management.

There is no news section, but there is an “amenities” section that will consist of photos and captions that capture the latest, most exciting new design elements and amenities in hospitality. The first “amenities” section includes photos of the first bar made out of ice at a U.S. hotel and self check-in kiosks.

TIP: Anyone can submit photos and captions for the section as long as it’s something innovative that can be captured visually.

What to Pitch: Ideas and Experts

Rose is looking for feature story ideas and experts to write advice articles.

A. Cover story

Pitches for cover stories are welcome. “We try to put interesting stories about companies people have heard of on the cover,” says Rose, who is interviewing an exec at Trump Entertainment Resorts for the first issue.

Sometimes cover stories will consist of case studies of best practices. Sometimes, they’ll be issue-based, such as how a hotel uses Facebook and Twitter or blogs in marketing strategies.

The only hitch: Rose has no interest in what small companies are doing because they don’t target that audience. She’s most interested in what execs at medium- to large-sized companies have to say.

B. Feature stories

The magazine will feature three stories per issue. Try pitching features that address these issues:

-Management
Most hospitality executives are concerned about managing their frontline employees -- front desk staff at a hotel, waiters at a restaurant, or dealers at a casino. Management and employee retention are hot topics.

-Training
Employee training and reward programs are equally as important because they can yield positive employee retention results in this high-turnover industry.

-Technology
Many execs use technology to manage their hotel, restaurant, and/or casino; therefore, they deal with a fair amount of technology challenges. Rose is hoping to provide solutions to these challenges in Welcome.

-Marketing
Mobile marketing and social media may be the wave of the future in marketing, but some hospitality marketers are still struggling to understand what it means for their industry. Welcome will address best practices in marketing.

-Sustainability
With so much use of natural resources, such as water for washing dishes and laundry, and electricity to keep ovens, lights, TVs, and slot machines going, execs in the hospitality industry are always looking for ways to be environmentally friendly.

They’re also looking for ways to market those aspects of their business models to consumers, Rose says.

C. Experts

Rose is looking for consultants and subject matter experts to share advice on coverage topics.

Examples of subject matter experts:

-Lawyer who specializes in hospitality legal issues

-Technology expert who specializes in systems that restaurants use for ordering (must not be affiliated with the company selling them)

-Technology expert who specializes in systems hotels use for managing reservations (must not be affiliated with the company selling them)

-Someone who has done a lot of marketing for hotels, restaurants, or casinos

-Someone who specializes in management of front-line, hourly employees

Rose’s only request is that consultants and subject matter experts easy to work with. That means responding to follow-up questions, getting things in on time, not being too pesky about when the article will be published.

4 Pointers for Pitching Rose

#1. Pitch ideas separately

Rose doesn’t like to receive 10 pitches in one email. She’d rather get one good pitch per email. That pitch should fully illustrates what the article would be about.

#2. Ideas should be worthy of 1,000 words

The average length of a feature story is about 1,000 words; so, a pitch needs to have some complexity to appeal to Rose. She doesn’t have time for fluff.

#3. Present a consistent PR contact

It’s helpful for Rose to hear from the same PR contact within an agency for each article. She understands that it’s not always possible since different people work on different accounts, “but it makes a huge difference,” she says.

“If I can match a person with a PR company and I know that’s my contact there and I hear from them often, then I recognize their name and I have an idea about whether they are going to be pitching something that makes sense for me,” she says.

#4. Make the pitch clear and straightforward

Rose gets a lot of pitches that are unnecessarily wordy. And that’s the antithesis of what a good pitch should be.

Where to meet

Rose attends the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society Conference and the Emerging Technologies Conference at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology every year. She’s not sure if she’ll be adding a hospitality conference to her agenda just yet.

She is happy to meet with people who plan to visit her office. Keep in mind, though, that it takes an hour to get from Boston to Beverly, MA. It looks shorter on the map but traffic prevails.

TIP: Rose generally doesn’t write about products; so, she has no time for product demonstrations.

Useful links related to this article

How to Get in American Executive Magazine
http://www.marketingsherpa.com/article.html?id=23420

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