To DM or not to DM? Do journalists prefer to be contacted via social media?

Is it appropriate to direct message (DM) a journalist? This is the latest conundrum facing us PR pros. With work from anywhere and our personal lives very much overlapping our professional personas, it can be hard to know where the line is drawn, and if we are going to overstep a boundary by sending a DM.

DMing on social media is great for coordinating a meet up with friends, but is it a good idea for pitching a client’s story to a journalist? Cision’s 2022 State of the Media Report shed some light on this topic. 23% of journalists find it to be acceptable—and 4% prefer it over any other method—34% explicitly say they don’t prefer it, and 12% will even go so far as to block a PR pro who tries to slide into their DMs.

Based on this information, it would be wise to be careful about using DM for pitching. If you know it’s a journalist that prefers that mode of communication, then go for it. But if they haven’t shared that it’s okay to DM them, we advise against doing it and recommend finding another way to get your story idea in front of them.

Instead use social media to learn more about their areas of interest and what they’re covering or posting about.t. This will help you create pitches that a journalist  cares about and increase your chances of getting media coverage.

We’d love to help create b2b tech PR pitches that will stand out. Please contact TechComms, a b2b tech marketing and communications agency on + 44 (0) 203 322 8928.