How to get coverage from startup reporters

Updated May 2024 – The media landscape changes very regularly with reporters changing beats and media outlets on a more regular basis. As such, the startup reporters in this article were last updated on the date listed above. You’ll see an asterisk next to updated reporters. Before diving into the who…let’s talk a little about the how. How we approach journalists and startup reporters with our stories is even more important than identifying the reporter, because if you don’t come correct, you’ll never get a response. So, let’s review a few pitching basics before we get into our Hot List for Startup Reporters.

Tip 1 – Do your research

New and reporter beats change all the time, make sure you are staying up to date with the latest changes in the media. With the temperament of the media landscape people are moving around all the time too. Not to mention the “gig” nature of the journalist economy. Make sure even in this list to check out where the reporters “actually” are and what they are interested in. Twitter, Instagram and Linkedin are great places to verify their areas.

Tip 2 – Make your story timely

What’s timely about your story? Are you pitching a story that makes sense to report on NOW? Evergreen stories are great, but typically take longer to get a response for. If your story has a hot deadline or timeline, make sure you’re pitching at least 2-3 weeks in advance. You have another window of about 1-2 weeks post announcement as well. If you’re pitching an exclusive, always provide a target date for release.

Tip 3 – Extract the juicy bits of your story

What are the most interesting parts for the industry? What are you doing to change the world or to interest THEIR readers? Even refer to an article. Journalists are not indebted to you since you’re the one reaching out. You need to explain why your story is first, a good fit for the journalist and secondly, a good fit for their readers! Remember that journalists are looking for story views, they have a job to do too.

Tip 4 – Never say anything you don’t want reported

I stand by my credo that “nothing is off the record”, you can read more about that in the “Nothing is off-the-record” blog. However, if you feel compelled to share exclusive information with a reporter, make sure you get a written or verbal agreement first. You can do this by revealing just enough to be relevant to the reporter and letting them know that you can “share more information if you agree to the embargo date of April 1, 2023 at 10:00 am PT,” for example. That way at least you covered your base. Even then, it is up to the reporters personal ethics if they want to hold that information. Some reporters may come back to you asking you to share the information when it’s out because…their organization does not hold embargo promises.

Tip 5 – Don’t be afraid to ask questions or follow up – you may need to reach out many times – Especially true for startup reporters

The biggest miss for anyone doing their own media relations is not following up or feeling like you are bothering the reporter. Don’t worry, we get it, but this is the crucial element that will make the difference of you being in or out of a story. We recommend to follow up about 3-4 times and always follow up with added value (information , stats or something helpful).

Now that we’ve given you a few disclaimers, here’s the latest Hot List, happy pitching!

The Hot List – Startup Reporters

Bloomberg, Ellen Huet* – Ellen Huet now writes tech features for Bloomberg and previously was focused on startups and Silicon Valley culture. You can find her on X here.

Bloomberg Opinion, Parmy Olson* – Technology columnist at Bloomberg Opinion, Parmy Olson covers startups and technology innovation. Twitter

Bloomberg Technology, Emily Chang* – Host and executive producer at Bloomberg Technology, Emily Chang focuses on tech and startup culture. Twitter

Freelance, Jon Fingas* – Freelance tech writer, Jon Fingas covers startups, gadgets, and tech news for various publications. Twitter

GeekWire, Taylor Soper* – Managing editor at GeekWire, Taylor Soper covers startups, tech news, and innovation in the Pacific Northwest. Twitter

INSIDER, Britney Nguyen* – Britney Nguyen is a junior reporter covering careers and people in consulting, finance, tech, fintech, and startups previously covering trending tech and biz news. See her bio and previous articles here.

New York Times, Erin Griffith* – Erin Griffith is a New York Times journalist based in the San Francisco bureau, where she covers tech companies and Silicon Valley.

Learn more about Erin and her previously written articles here.

Techcrunch, Natasha Mascarenhas* – Is a senior reporter at TechCrunch covering early stage startups and venture capital trends. See her profile on Techcrunch.

TechCrunch, Sarah Perez* – Reporter at TechCrunch, Sarah Perez covers mobile technology, startups, and Silicon Valley news. Twitter

TechCrunch, Paul Sawers* – Senior writer at TechCrunch, Paul Sawers covers startups, enterprise technology, and tech innovation. Twitter

TechCrunch+, Alex Wilhelm* – Editor-in-chief at TechCrunch+, Alex Wilhelm covers startups, venture capital, and technology trends. Twitter

Venturebeat, Ken Yeung – Ken Yeung is a contributing writer and editor with VentureBeat. Formerly, he held the position of staff reporter, specializing in covering news across startups, enterprise, developers, and social media. Ken’s contact information and profile can be found here.

WIRED, Sarah Mitroff – Sarah is a reporter for Wired Business, covering young startups and Silicon Valley culture. Pitch her funding and startup news, find her profile for WIRED here.

WIRED, Arielle Pardes* – Senior writer at Wired, Arielle Pardes focuses on tech culture and the impact of startups on society. Twitter

WIRED, Brenda Stolyar* – Product reviewer at WIRED, Brenda Stolyar covers the latest in tech products and startups. Twitter

* Denotes updated reporter information

If you want to hear some additional insights on these reporters, make sure you tune into Episode 127 of The PR Playbook Podcast on Apple, Amazon, Spotify or your favorite podcast player.

Are you looking forward to the next Hot List or want us to outline a specific segment? Send us an email on what reporter segment you’d like to see next or schedule a complimentary strategy call with The Silver Telegram and we can do a quick live search together to identify startup reporters relevant to your brand.