Fresh eyes

‘New media relations’ is still about ‘good old’ content

New media relations is still about good old content
Andrew Taylor Senior PR & Comms Manager

Written by Andrew Taylor,
PR & Communications Director at Freshfield

There are many things social media channels have allowed us to do that we weren’t able to before.

Few would disagree that one of the biggest changes has been the way individuals are able to interact with people and communities that previously seemed out of reach to them.

Whether it’s a music fan tweeting one of their idols, or one of those idols using their Twitter feed to announce a new album release directly to their fans, the ability to connect with stakeholders is arguably easier and quicker than at any other time in history.

As a result, the traditional media’s news agenda is being shaped more and more by what appears on the social media channels of individuals and organisations.

Many successful brands have been able to use this to their advantage by using channels such as Facebook and Twitter to tell their story in a new way, influencing not just their new online ‘followers’ but also those who can get that message to offline audiences.

Some organisations have used these channels to interact more directly, and often more informally, with journalists, bloggers and other key opinion formers.

Organisations that do this well have been successful – while those that do it badly have often ended up red-faced or in hot water.

The lesson here is that though it may now be easier to reach your target audiences through social media, most of the old rules still apply. Perhaps the most important of these rules is that content is still king.

Previously, when you sent information to journalists using little more than the press release, the strength of this content was the primary concern. Why should it be any different now? Your online content still has to be strong, as well as being supported by pictures, videos and so much more.

Some organisations have rushed into media relations via social media with little thought given to content. It’s simply not enough to say ‘this is who we are, this is what we do’.

Organisations looking to use social media to build strong relationships with journalists and other opinion formers need a clear plan. More importantly, it still has to be done alongside traditional media relations techniques.

The starting point for this is always a well thought out communications strategy, with clearly defined key messages, aims and objectives. Only then can you think about the tactical element of your PR campaign.

At Freshfield, we help our clients communicate successfully through integrated PR campaigns, helping them to produce strong and authoritative content in line with their strategic objectives. Contact us to find out more.

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