Propel PRM Releases the “Propel Wrapped: Journalist Engagement 2022” Report To Reveal How the News Was Pitched and Received This Year
The data, which was taken from 1.7 million PR pitches sent via the Propel platform, provides a detailed picture of how the events most affecting humanity, from war to economic turbulence, were pitched to and received by the media.
Tel Aviv, Israel— December 21, 2022— Propel, the leading Public Relations Management (PRM) platform, has released the statistics of how the news was pitched in 2022 with its inaugural Propel Wrapped: Journalist Engagement 2022 report. Looking at approximately 1.7 million PR pitches sent to journalists via the platform from January to December, 2022, Propel found which topics were most likely to get a journalist’s attention and elicit a response. For example, pitches about TikTok only received a 0.51% response rate, while pitches on the flu were responded to 23.14% of the time.
The report looked into various events from 2022 including international geopolitics, the economic downturn, climate change, energy, and sports, to see how likely a journalist was to cover a given topic.
The Russian invasion of Ukraine began on February 24, 2022, and with it a flurry of pitches on the subject. Interestingly, of the 5,770 pitches mentioning Ukraine, only 2.67% received any response, while of the 984 pitches mentioning Russia, only 1.9% were responded to. In addition, 23,996 pitches with the word “war” were sent this year, garnering a 4% response.
Meanwhile, the US saw midterm elections in November 2022 to decide who would control the US Congress, but only 1.01% of these types of political pitches received any sort of response.
Finally, with the upheaval of British politics in 2022 coupled with the passing of Queen Elizabeth II, people in communications found ample opportunity to use these news stories in their pitches. Showing how popular the late Queen Mother was, 4.08% of pitches mentioning her received responses of some kind. This is compared to pitches containing the names of Liz Truss (0.14%) and Rishi Sunak (0.74%).
Due to the snarling of global supply chains, there were massive backups at ports around the world, and deliveries were overdue. With this being such an important issue around the world, it should come as no surprise that pitches mentioning supply chains had a relatively high response rate of over 5%.
Meanwhile, just as central banks around the world have been raising interest rates, PR professionals increased the number of pitches using the phrase “interest rate” to 2,314 and 6,072 using the word “inflation,” receiving response rates of 1.47% and 1.48% respectively. Meanwhile, pitches using the word “recession” were responded to 2.83% of the time.
Of course, the world economy has changed to include more people working remotely and hybridly, and this new way of working was also popular in pitching in 2022. So much so in fact that 16,927 pitches were sent on the subject of work. However, only 3.04% of these pitches received responses.
Our Technological World
2022 started with Spotify’s huge procurement of the world’s largest podcast The Joe Rogan Experience. While there were only 114 pitches sent with Spotify as the topic, it still received one of the highest response rates of any tech topic with 8.77% of pitches mentioning the company being responded to.
In addition, with so much happening with Meta and the metaverse, it was no wonder that PR professionals were trying to catch this virtual news wave, sending 2,486 pitches on the metaverse and 8,635 using the name “Meta”, which received response rates of 3.86% and 3.51% respectively. Interestingly, pitches using the phrase “TikTok” only received a 0.51% response rate.
Meanwhile, Elon Musk’s takeover of Twitter sent shockwaves around both the media and tech landscapes given Twitter’s importance as a journalistic tool. Despite this, pitches using Twitter as the topic only received a 1.23% response rate, but pitches on Elon Musk had a 3.67% response rate. It should be noted that the number of pitches mentioning Elon Musk was quadruple the amount of pitches mentioning Twitter.
However, funding round pitches performed extraordinarily well. Of the 6,984 pitches on the subject of “funding”, 7.88% received responses. Which round received funding also played a part as to whether a story would receive coverage, with Seed round pitches being responded to 19.01% of the time, Series A rounds 12.03% of the time, Series B rounds 13.43% of the time, and Series C rounds 12.78% of the time. Meanwhile, pitches regarding mergers and/or acquisitions received response rates of 3.55% and 11.9% respectively.
Perhaps unsurprisingly, AI was one of the most pitched topics of 2022, with 113,463 pitches on the topic being sent out. However, only 2.78% of these pitches received any sort of a response, leading Propel to believe that this topic is being overpitched and that journalists aren’t as excited about the topic as they used to be.
Climate and Energy
Surprisingly, despite the intense weather seen throughout the world, “drought” was almost completely ignored, with only 13 pitches with the word going out over the entire year, compared with 342 pitches containing the word “flood.” Meanwhile, 3,358 pitches were sent out containing the phrases “heat” or “heatwave,” receiving a 0.83% response rate, and 2,326 using the word “climate”, of which only 3.01% were responded to at all. In addition, there were 324 pitches sent using the word “hurricane”, of which 3.4% received responses.
Due to these climate issues, there was a lot of news coming out of the energy sector as well. In fact, there were 8,994 pitches sent using “energy” as the hook, but only 2.42% were responded to. Meanwhile, there were 7,087 pitches on the topic of “gas” which received a 2.33% response rate, and 1,177 on the topic of “coal” which got a 0.59% response rate. Interestingly, there were no pitches sent using the phrases “wind energy”, “greenhouse gasses”, or “global warming.”
There were only 1,358 pitches using Covid-19 as the hook, signaling that journalists, as well as PR professionals, recognize that the subject has oversaturated the pitching market. In fact, Covid-19 related pitches only had a 2.8% journalist response rate. Meanwhile, despite 4,328 pitches being sent out on the subject of vaccines, only 2.47% received any sort of response. Surprisingly, pitches about the flu - of which there were 6,177 - received a 23.14% response rate. This is the highest response rate of any pitching subject, across all pitching subjects, that Propel has seen this year.
Way back in February, China hosted the 2022 Winter Olympics. However, the games were only used as a subject for pitching in 193 pitches, perhaps due to the geopolitical tensions surrounding the games this year. And yet, the World Cup was featured in 2,565 pitches, but these pitches were responded to only 1.25% of the time.
“Between war and economic turbulence to elections in several of the world’s major powers to new technological developments, 2022 has certainly been a year where the news seemingly didn’t stop,” said Zach Cutler, Co-Founder & CEO of Propel PRM. ”Therefore we created the Propel 2022 Wrapped: Journalist Engagement report to enable both PR professionals and journalists to make sense of the year that was from both a communications and news point of view, as well as give PR pros the tools to enable them to understand what worked and what didn’t throughout this past year. We believe that by providing this in-depth look into what topics worked and which topics flopped, we can enable PR pros to pitch more compelling stories while better providing journalists with the information they want in 2023.”
Propel PRM is reimagining earned media with its Public Relations Management technology. The PRM platform enables marketing and communication professionals to discover the right media to pitch their stories to, manage media relationships and campaigns, monitor coverage and share of voice of their brand, and easily measure business impact from earned media efforts. Propel has over 150 customers, including Real Chemistry, Textron, Insurify, and other leading brands and agencies. Launched in 2019, Propel is headquartered in Tel Aviv and has teams based in New York, London and Miami. Propel has raised $6 million in venture funding to date and is the fastest-growing PR technology in the world. For more information, visit www.propelmypr.com.