As a contributing editor and writer, the best pitches that I get are the ones that really understand what I already cover and what I'm doing -- they show empathy about what I need. The "instant deletes" are the ones that are spammy and show no knowledge about what I do.
The problem is that this takes work and research. The great thing is that customizing your pitch gets results. The risk is that BAD customization, e.g. "I read your story about IT marketing, now let me pitch you about server racking", is even MORE annoying. But that won't happen if you're careful and thoughtful, you'll end up with, "Jonathan, I know that you write a lot about how technology affects the workplace, I'm working on a Kickstarter that helps organizations create better workplaces through a new technology that does XYZ ... "
I hope that helps. Glad to get on a call if that would be helpful.
Most definitely. I actually highly recommend it so that you can collect emails before launching. This can be done through creating a beautiful landing page with content. Depending on your press approach, you could email writers or hire a PR firm.