Thursday, June 15, 2006

List Management 

There was an anonymous response yesterday to the posting titled "one chance" in which I cautioned a person who had spammed me with a press release. The respondent asked why I didn't ask to be taken off the mailing list and said it was unreasonable to expect a publicist to manage a list, which the publicist might have bought somewhere.

Unfortunately, list management of media is what PR practitioners do, or should be doing. One of our key tasks is to know the media that cover our organizations' interests. As the media never tire in telling us, it's our responsibility to know who they are and not their responsibility to educate us.

I wish I could agree with this respondent, but I can't. I and my colleagues spend hundreds of hours annually developing, checking and rechecking media lists to make sure they go to the right reporters. We haven't been right every time, but it's not for want of trying. Any practitioner who says list management is "not my job" is someone who doesn't know PR, it seems to me.

I don't know why that showed up anonymous, I put in all my info.

I manage quite the media list, actually, and I frequently get email replies asking to be removed from the list or telling me the address of someone who would do better to receive our emails. It takes, what, 10 seconds to write an email? Are we supposed to check the list once a week? I don't know, maybe these people have never called you to verify their list, but at some point the common sense thing to do would be take a brief moment to respond and asked to be taken off.

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