A newsletter arrived in my inbox this morning from a national women’s consumer publication and with the headline “13 Olympians to Watch this Summer.” As an Olympic junkie, I couldn’t wait to open it and learn more about some of the amazing athletes the world would be following in just a few weeks.
I was pretty shocked when I got to the third athlete they highlighted, Nastia Liukin. Anyone watching the gymnastic trials last night knows “Nas” (as her fellow gymnasts call her) took a nasty fall from the uneven bars, ultimately ending the gold medalist’s career. Nastia Liukin did not make the 2012 United States Women’s Gymnastic team.
Sending this newsletter was a miss on the publication’s part. If only they’d been in tune with the news of last night, they could have saved themselves from some embarrassment. This is also a reminder to PR professionals to know what is going on in the world around you. You’ll be laughed off the phone if you’re trying to pitch a story today to media in Colorado Springs due to the wildfires or in Washington, D.C., due to the power outages. Before you pitch a local market, check the news stations’ websites to understand the landscape and what they are facing locally.
As practice is to our Olympic athletes, homework is to PR professionals. Both can help us achieve great things.