PR pros take note: Here’s how not to write a pitch letter

Gawker always takes special glee in shaming awful PR pitches on its site, but this one particular one is on another level.

Gawker ridiculed David Johnson of the PR firm Strategic Vision LLC, by publishing this pitch he sent to a reporter for his client George Moufarrej. Moufarrej recently authored a book called Sexual Euphoria, which is apparently about how what you eat determines who you date. An interesting enough topic, (even if the title is better suited to softcore porn rather than scientific findings) but here’s how Johnson chose to pitch it:

From: David Johnson 
Date: Tue, Sep 17, 2013 at 12:15 PM
Subject: Possible Story – How What You Eat Defines Who You Will Date
To: [Unfortunate journalist]

We all know the old saying we are what we eat. Well it also applies to who we date. Did you know that if you like certain foods it means you are attracted to certain types of people. If you like Italian, you are attracted to taller, more defined, athletic and passionate people. If you like Chinese you are more attracted to the wiz kid type. So what does the type of food you like say about who you will date? What does it say about your love life?

Able to discuss this and more is George Moufarrej, a leading relationship expert and author of the book, Sexual Euphoria. He has tips on what foods say about who you are attracted too and how what you eat affects your love life. He has appeared on CNN and in Cosmo for his expertise. Would you be interested in interviewing him on this?

Thanks for any consideration.

David Johnson

Strategic Vision, LLC


Gawker called it “racially offensive, full of misspellings and grammatical errors.” While I don’t think Johnson is a racist, he is at the very least pretty tone-deaf (Chinese food = chinese person- whiz kid stereotype) about how to pitch what may actually be a fairly nuanced argument about how our culinary taste also dictates our romantic taste. What’s actually offensive is the bro-ish, wink wink, nudge nudge opening sentence of “We all know eating Italian food means you are attracted to taller, more defined athletic people” which is just plain stupid to say. 

Either this was George Moufarrej’s pitch for his book in which case, don’t read it and shame him on Amazon. Or it was all David Johnson’s idea, in which case, please hold him up as an example of how to screw up a PR pitch and get shamed on Gawker. 


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