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    Coffee with a Journalist: Lucia Moses, Insider

    Lucia Moses is a senior correspondent at Insider. She writes and reports on media for the publication and held a previous role as deputy editor overseeing media and advertising coverage.

    During the episode, Lucia talks about the difference in stories that are behind the paywall vs in front of it, why she enjoys covering well-known brands, her openness to feedback on stories, and more.

     Follow her on Twitter and LinkedIn.

    Click below to listen to the full conversation and read below for highlights from the interview:


    CWJ View Transcription CTA


    The Making of a Great Subject Line

    [00:04:34] BB: Are there any pitches from their subject lines that stand out to you? 

    [00:04:40] LM: Sure. I can think of a couple recently. 

    [00:04:43] BB: Oh, tell us. 

    [00:04:44] LM: I don't want to be too specific with the names because I haven't written the stories yet, but the name of the company caught my eye. The theme or the topic that it was attached to caught my eye. So I'm going to make this up. But if it were Disney and streaming or something. I think, okay, those are companies. That's a company I'm covering. That's a topic I'm really interested in. So company names, exact names, topic it's about. Of course, if it's exclusive, if that's in the subject line, I know you're going to get to that later, but that's obviously appealing.

    [00:05:25] BB: So you want the names, the brand, the detail in the subject line, ideally, for it to stand out to you.

    [00:05:32] LM: Yeah. No curiosity gap, please. Just get to it. 


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    How to Build a Relationship 

    [00:06:09] BB: How about then the actual pitch? For you, what's a great pitch?

    [00:06:19] LM: It’s a pitch about a company or industry, obviously, that I'm covering or that I want to cover more. It's about a topic that's squarely in line with the topics we want to own. It's ideally exclusive to me. It has details about what executives or executive companies can offer up. There's some details about the news they can offer, the data points they can offer. We're going to tell you the first time what our plans are or how much we're going to invest, etc. And there's a timeframe. We can set up an interview this week. We have a story. We'd like it to go live on this day. That helps.

    [00:06:59] BB: Yep. You put the desire on it. Yep. You did just say exclusive to me. So there seems to be some murkiness around exclusives or something you hear on the show and in various circles. So exclusive to me, meaning, hey, I am getting all of the news, and there's no other reporter or outlet that is getting a part of this news. Correct?

    [00:07:23] LM: Right. I think kind of like how on our end, as reporters, there's some difference in opinion, say, what on background means or what on or off the record means.

    When people say exclusive, I just like to clarify. Do you mean the whole thing is exclusive to me, or I'm getting exclusive interview with a person, or it's exclusive for half an hour, and then everybody knows?


    [00:07:49] BB: Yes, very good point. When do you ask those details? Is that upon the first email where you're like, “Hmm. Interesting but –”? 

    [00:07:59] LM: I think it helps to get that out of the way as soon as possible, so we're just on the same page.


    Rapid Fire Pitching Preferences

    [00:15:27] BB: Video or phone interview?

    • [00:15:49] LM: Phone, unless I've never met the person, and I expect to be talking to them a lot. It's nice to see what people look like.

    [00:15:56] BB: Bullet points or paragraphs?

    • [00:15:59] LM: Short paragraphs are nice. 

    [00:16:00] BB: Okay. Short or long pitches?

    • [00:16:03] LM: No more than one screen.

    [00:16:05] BB: Images attached or a Dropbox zip file?

    • [00:16:11] LM: Attached. So I don't have to click 1,000 times.

    [00:16:16] BB: Pitches in the morning or at night or no preference?

    • [00:16:24] LM: I would say the morning. 
    • [00:16:25] BB: Morning ET time too, just so people know. Yeah. 

    [00:16:31] BB: Email or Twitter DM?

    • [00:16:34] LM: Email is better, even though – Despite what I said about my inbox being a hot mess. I mean, it's just hard to monitor all these other places, and I do sometimes miss Twitter DMs. So I don't want to miss your pitch.

    [00:16:47] BB: One follow up or multiple? I know we've covered this. 

    • [00:16:52] LM: I think one is fine. If I haven't responded the second time, it's probably just not for me, and I just haven't had time to get back to you.

    [00:17:00] BB: Direct or creative subject lines? 

    • [00:17:03] LM: I would keep it direct. Keep it simple, economical. 

    [00:17:08] BB: Then press release or media kit?

    • [00:17:14] LM: I just like to get the press release. I just like to see it in the email. 
    • [00:17:18] BB: Oh, like copied and pasted like right there?
    • [00:17:21] LM: Right there. Yeah. Again, the fewer things I have to click and open, the better. 




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