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Hacks and Flacks

Hacks and Flacks is a podcast that dissects PR, marketing and media from the inside out. We speak to comms experts and influencers to break down trends, share best practices and give advice. Winner of podcasting awards from the Publicity Club of New England and The Holmes Report. Produced by March Communications, an award-winning integrated PR and marketing agency with offices in Boston and Chicago. Subscribe to receive new episodes as they are published. For more visit

Jul 22, 2016

When big news breaks, it's tempting to check if there's a chance to add your company's voice to the issue (how's your Pokemon Go pitch coming along, by the way?).

As March Senior Account Executive Alex Jafarzadeh recently wrote, the recent Brexit story provided interesting examples of what works and what can go wrong when you try to offer your spokesperson to reporters as an expert on a major timely news story.

"Newsjacking," as this PR strategy is called, can pay off when you have a legitimate angle or comment to offer a journalist. However, a poorly conceived pitch might come off as trivial, clueless and even tasteless depending on the story and timing.

On this week's Hacks and Flacks, we ask Alex and March Account Director Courtney Allen: when does this type of pitching cross the line, and how can PR pros ensure that their pitch actually benefits both the reporter and their client?


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