My current peeve: PR reps who respond to HARO and Profnet queries without paying any attention to the outlet for whom I'm writing. Yes, it's a small thing for me to write back with the information, but it certainly sends a loud signal to me that this person doesn't pay attention to details. It also makes me think they're more interested in pitching their clients to as many reporters as possible so they look like they're worth the money, versus finding great fits most likely to result in actual coverage. It's that old shotgun v. rifle thing. This just adds to the tension between PR people and reporters. And it's not necessary.

So give this a try, media relations people, before you pitch based only on topic, take a peek at the outlet and make sure it's a good fit. Before you write a reporter to ask what outlet they're working with, go back and look at the query. Help us like you.