Event Recap: Charlotte, NC Media on Reaching Minority Communities

March 30, 2010
Business Wire/Charlotte recently hosted a luncheon on March 24th in Durham, NC. The discussion, moderated by Ely Perez, Engagement Marketing Manager for Capstrat, focused on best practices for companies in the Triangle region and across North Carolina to reach the Hispanic and African American communities. The panel of speakers included:
  • Blaire Borthayre, president of Hispanic Marketing Resources
  • Jose Cusicanqui, Raleigh/Durham Editor for Qué Pasa, North Carolina’s most widely read Spanish-language newspaper
  • Cash Michaels, chief reporter/photographer and columnist for The Carolinian, a twice-weekly African American newspaper.

    L-R: Cash Michaels, Blaire Borthayre, Jose Cusicanqui, Ely Perez

 

Among the insights brought by the panelists:

 

Blaire Borthayre:
  • Not all Hispanics are short and brown.
  • Know thy customer and find commonalities with your audience. Tough market to differentiate.
  • All buying decisions are based on who they trust.
  • Know the culture, not just the language.
  • What marketers need to ask themselves: How long has their audience been in the US? There are 4 different segments.
Segment 1: 5 years or less; they get all their info from Spanish media; still living in their own culture.
Segment 2: 5-10 years; at home they speak Spanish; some English outside of the home; understand pieces of info; more internet friendly.
Segment 3: 10+ years; internet friendly; assimilated; served through English media.
Segment 4: US Born Hispanics; only 35% speak Spanish.

 

Jose Cusicanqui:
  • Qué Pasa is the only NC newspaper reaching Hispanics.
  • Qué Pasa has 67,000 readers every week.
  • Hispanics will have $18 billion buying power by 2010.
  • Each Hispanic culture is very different. Know the culture of the group you are trying to reach.

 

Cash Michaels:
  • The Carolinian is a family owned business.
  • African Americans are a very loyal consumer base.
  • African Americans primarily have church-based communities that they care a lot about.
  • When pitching a story to Cash, be mindful of what is going on in the news: e.g., April is election time.
  • Get Cash’s attention by sending a video. Create your own documentary.
  • The rules for reaching African Americans are constantly changing.
Don’t forget to look for Business Wire events in your own area, as well as register for our free webinars on PR, IR, SEO, monitoring and more.

Upcoming Business Wire Events – March 29 Edition

March 29, 2010

The Impact of Social Media on Traditional News Reporting

Join Business Wire experts in your area for media breakfasts, panel discussions and other insightful events. We bring local media members and industry thought leaders to your market to discuss today’s most relevant topics, from writing for SEO to marketing with social media. Best of all, Business Wire events are usually free of charge. Check out some of our upcoming events in your area:

Convergence, Citizen and Social Journalism: Strategies on Sending Your Press Release to Today’s Media

Hosted by Business Wire Florida

Join Business Wire Florida for a panel discussion on the changing landscape in media venue, platform and audience. Panelists Cindy Kent, Business News Desk at the Sun Sentinel; Margie Schneider, VP Operations for Ten Golden Rules; and Maria de Los Angeles, South Florida blogger, senior writer and forum editor for Miami Beach 411 will discuss the role of social media in the media world and options to get corporate messages out to industry followers, opinion leaders, stakeholders and the social community. This event is free for all attendees.

Tuesday, April 13 at 8:00am ET
Broward College, Willis Holcombe Center
111 East Las Olas Blvd, 12th Floor Boardroom, Ft. Lauderdale, FL 33301
To register: RSVP to Claudia Perez-Bonilla at 954.474.8833 or email claudia.perez@businesswire.com by April 9

Navigation in Today’s Global-Mobile-Social World: From a PR Perspective

Hosted by Business Wire San Francisco

Take your understanding of the online traditional media and the social media to the next level!  In this session, our panel of experts will address the changing landscape in media venues, platforms and audiences plus best practices to get corporate messages out and talked about in the expansive universe of industry followers, opinion leaders, stakeholders and social community.  They’ll discuss how social media and online search affects news reporting, corporate messaging (traditional and new), and the importance of envisioning the information you wish to deliver, as well as where to deliver it. Business Wire VP of New Media Monika Maeckle moderates a panel including Chris Heuer, Founder, AdHocnium and Social Media Club; Maura Ginty, Customer Experience, Worldwide Marketing, Autodesk; David Toole, CEO, MEDIAMobz; Rachel Polish, Vice President, Ogilvy’s 360 Digital Influence; BJ Fogg, Director, Persuasive Technology Lab, Stanford University; and Kimarie Mathews, Voice and Customer Experience, Wells Fargo Bank. This event is free for Business Wire members and $20 for non-members.

Thursday, April 15 at 9:00am PST
Autodesk’s Meeting Center
The Landmark @ One Market
One Market Street, San Francisco, CA 94105
To register: Please RSVP to Sandy Donnelly at sandy.donnelly@businesswire.com or call 415.986.4422 x561 by April 12

Meet the Media: How to Effectively Communicate Your Message

Hosted by Business Wire Los Angeles

Join Business Wire LA for breakfast and a “Meet the Media” panel discussion with local media members Eddie Chan, West Coast Financial Editor-in-Charge for Thomson Reuters; Alberto Mendez, Assignment Editor for KCBS-TV/KCAL-TV; and Kevin Davis, COO for The Wrap.com. The panelists will answer questions from the audience and share their tips for effectively pitching news media, strategies and tactics. This event is free for all attendees.

Thursday, April 15 at 8:00am PT
Olympic Collection Center
11303 Olympic Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90064
To register: RSVP to Garrett Henricksen or Heather Hardge at larsvp@businesswire.com or call 310-820-9473 by Monday, April 12.

For more upcoming local Business Wire events or to see what’s coming up in our award-winning webinar series, visit http://www.businesswire.com/portal/site/home/business-wire-events.

Follow Business Wire events on Twitter! Hash tag #bwevents


Phoenix-Area Media Pros Offer Perspectives on Social Media at Business Wire Event

March 25, 2010

Business Wire/Phoenix recently hosted an event with a panel of local print and broadcast media professionals, on how social media and online search have affected news reporting.  Moderated by our own Malcolm Atherton, the event was attended by — among many others! — Linda VandeVrede of Valley PR Blog, a group blog covering PR, marketing and social media topics in the Phoenix area.  Check out Linda’s writeup on the event, with insight from all of the panelists.

Don’t forget to look for Business Wire events in your own area, as well as register for our free webinars on PR, IR, SEO, monitoring and more.


Why Your Release Might Not Make It In to Google News

March 24, 2010

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For many companies and agencies distributing press releases, appearing in online news outlets such as Google News is a significant benefit and often an important part of their PR or SEO strategy.  And from their perspective, getting in may seem quite straightforward when using a wire service such as Business Wire:  Write the press release, Send the press release, Appear in Google News!  What could be easier?

Well, what you may not know is that we do many things behind the scenes to deliver our content in a way that best complies with standards and rules laid out by Google and monitor performance to ensure the vast majority of our releases make it in to Google News.  On top of that, there are 18 reasons Google News may provide to us detailing why an individual release still doesn’t make the cut to reach their news index.  Some of these reasons are quite technical and are handled automatically by our world class technical team, but others vary based on the actual content of each individual release.  In this edition of SEO Tip Jar, I want to give you some insight into why Google News may reject your release and what you can do to best ensure that it doesn’t happen to you.

Before I get into it, please note that even if your release doesn’t make the cut for Google News, which in and of itself is an exceedingly rare occurrence, you will still be indexed by Google and available in the standard or “universal” search results.  Also, you can find the full list of rejection reasons in Google’s support section.  Of the 18 reasons Google may give, we tend to only see about five with any frequency.  Without further ado, here they are, in order of most common to least common:

“Article disproportionately short” /  “Article is too short”

Google does not give an exact word count to qualify for this criteria, but in my research this is most likely to occur when a release is less than 125 words.  However, I have seen instances when this reason is given in error as well with releases as long as 700 words.  In any case, these two errors constitute about 50% of the total errors we see, so be sure to make your releases at least 125 words to maximize your chances of inclusion.

“Page too large”

This is the most straightforward error in Google’s system.  Any page larger than 256KB may be flagged with this error, and most of the offenders tend to be very detailed and lengthy earnings reports with large tables and lots of text.  These releases are still indexed and available in Google Finance, which is usually the more appropriate and valuable venue for discovery.

“Title not found” (Title too short or long)

This is a deceptively named error, since it really means the title/headline of your release is too long.  According to Google, “…the title is required to be between 2 and 22 words, inclusive,” and headlines that don’t match this criteria are flagged with this error.  So be sure to check the word count in your headline and keep them relatively brief!

“Article Fragmented”

This error is very rare and only seems to occur on advisory releases with one sentence paragraphs or a very large number of bullet points.  It occurs when “The article …appears to consist of isolated sentences not grouped together into paragraphs.”  Avoid this error by ensuring the first paragraph of your release has at least two or three consecutive sentences.

Key Points

So if you want to best ensure your release gets into Google News, be sure to do the following with each release:

  • Write at least 125 words
  • Keep your headline between 2 and 22 words
  • Start your release with a three sentence paragraph

Editor’s Corner – March Edition

March 22, 2010

With 30 bureaus around the world and more newsrooms than all of our competitors combined, Business Wire is proud to provide local expertise and superior service, backed by the most accurate editors in the world. In Editor’s Corner, we ask some of our best to chime in on how to get the most out of your press release, based on their years of experience in the industry.

BW Cleveland Editor Alan Waldinger

As an editor at Business Wire, I’m used to scouring press releases for any and all mistakes – misspellings, grammatical issues, punctuation errors, etc.  And while our clients do an excellent job of composing releases, there are a few key items that are occasionally omitted from them.  The following aren’t errors in a traditional sense, but correcting them can add to the visibility and utility of your press release.

1) Company Name in the Headline: It goes without saying that the headline is the most important part of your press release, providing the reader with a concise summary of its content.  It’s also important to signify who is issuing the release; you want the media to know that your company is announcing a new product, adding personnel, or receiving an award.  Something like “XYZ Corporation’s New ABC Software Improves Retail Inventory Distribution” seamlessly integrates your company’s name into the headline, while also including all of your release’s essential information.  Don’t forget that including your company name will also improve your visibility on many search engines.

2) Full Contact Information: The goal of a press release, in addition to making your news public, is to draw in media for supplemental coverage.  That release could result in an interview, or feature in a print or online publication.  It is imperative, therefore, for the media to be able to contact you directly.  Make sure you include your phone number (direct line if possible) and email address in every press release.  If you’re with an agency, make sure its name is also included with your contact information.  The growth of social media has generated even more avenues for business and media exchange, so don’t be afraid to provide your LinkedIn, Facebook or Twitter account.

3) Company Website: Although a corporate website has become the de facto place to learn more about a particular company, some writers still forget to include a URL address in a press release.  The boilerplate is an obvious location for a URL, but it also doesn’t hurt to hyperlink your company’s name in the first paragraph.

-Alan J. Waldinger, Jr., Newsroom Editor, Business Wire Cleveland


Buffett Comes Alive!

March 19, 2010

Anyone who has ever heard Warren Buffett, CEO of our corporate parent Berkshire Hathaway,  speak in interviews knows that he’s got a terrific sense of humor.  Recently he took it to a whole new level in a video produced by BH-owned Geico, which was shown at Geico’s annual employee meeting this past February.  In this musical extravaganza, Buffett . . . well, see for yourself:

Several media outlets have taken note of the video, but I have to call out Ryan McCarthy at The Huffington Post, who remarks ” . . . Buffett also sings — and surprisingly successfully.”  If you’ve ever seen Warren Buffett pull out a ukulele and spontaneously serenade your company’s CEO at a company sales meeting, as I have, you wouldn’t be surprised at all.

The Berkshire Hathaway Shareholder’s Meeting is coming up soon, on May 1 of this year, and of course Business Wire will be there, with one of our unique collectible items as in past years.  Keep checking back here — or subscribe to our RSS feed — for news on the BH meeting and more.


A Closer Look at the BRIC Countries: Russia

March 19, 2010

by Neil Hershberg, Senior Vice President, Global Media, Business Wire New York

According to conventional wisdom, the so-called “BRIC” countries [Brazil-Russia-India-China] will be the drivers of the 21st century global economy.

Business Wire is uniquely positioned, by virtue of its exclusive strategic relationships, to reach traditional and online media, investors, business decision-makers, and consumers in these dynamic markets.

In the first article of our four-part series, we profiled Agencia Estado, the most influential financial information provider in Brazil. This month, the spotlight shifts to Russia and our partner Interfax, which is the premier business and economic news service in Russia and neighboring markets.

Russia, 11th largest economy in the world, boasts the eighth largest purchasing power. Traditionally noted for its well-educated workforce, Russia has long been a power in natural gas, oil, coal and metals.

Business Wire has been a partner of Moscow-based Interfax since 2001. Interfax has spawned dozens of specialized news agencies under its umbrella organization, The Interfax Information Services Group. It is a leading content contributor to the world’s leading financial information platforms and databases, including Dow Jones, Thomson Reuters, Bloomberg, FT Information Ltd, Factiva and Lexis Nexis. The international investment community clearly recognizes Interfax as the most authoritative and credible source of Russian financial news. In fact, a February 2008 study confirmed that Interfax is the Russian news agency most frequently cited by both Russian and foreign media.

Read the rest of this entry »


A Look At EON From An SEM Pro’s Perspective

March 17, 2010

Ben Plomion heads up SEM Valet, a Search Engine Marketing firm that builds pay-per-click (PPC) campaigns for its clients, so he’s a guy you can trust to know his stuff.  Following a recent meeting, Ben took a look at EON: Enhanced Online News for its possible value in building backlinks to clients’ websites and being part of an online marketing or PR campaign.  Take a look at Ben’s thoughts and let him — and us! — know about your successes with EON.


The Power Of The Headline Compels You

March 17, 2010

Christine Kent gives some great examples of short but intriguing subject lines from e-mail pitches in “E-mail subject lines in 8 words or less,” an item in Ragan’s PR Daily.

Says Kent, “Given the attention spans of your media targets (right up there with gnats), and the tidal waves of e-mail that come flooding into reporter mailboxes, the onus is on you to be brief and clever.”

Click through to see the interesting, snappy, funny pitches your peers in PR are coming up with.  Who could resist a line like “Colorado:  Help bring a cow into the world” (crafted by Praco PR for the Colorado Tourism Office)?


Recap: Media & Public Relations Best Practices

March 15, 2010

Business Wire and Black PR Wire recently launched their joint Minority Leadership Series, in honor of Black History Month, with a webinar entitled Media & Public Relations Best Practices.

This 90-minute event, co-moderated by Bernadette Morris, President and CEO of Black PR Wire; and Raschanda Hall, Global Media Relations Manager for Business Wire, highlighted the communications and targeting strategies of professionals at three different types of organizations:

  • The Corporate View: Racquel White, Communications Director, The Coca-Cola Company Eurasia and Africa Group
  • The Small Business/Agency View: David Rudd, Vice President, The Axis Agency
  • The Government View: Althea Harris, Esq., Assistant District Director for Marketing and Outreach, Area 1, U.S. Small Business Administration

After an introduction in which reasons to target minority markets worldwide were discussed, each speaker discussed his or her own programs and successes in outreach and communications.

Among the highlights:

  • Coca-Cola takes a local approach to most of its campaigns, and encourages its consumers to engage with the brand or their own communities and talents via contests, challenges and other approaches.
  • The Axis Agency, a multicultural PR firm, recently completed a successful campaign for Disney Interactive Studios by using a multi-channel strategy developed over several months.
  • The Small Business Agency works with cities, chambers of commerce and other organizations to help leverage local expertise for their programs.  A recent partnership with the City of Miami resulted in a 350% increase in loans to underserved communities over five years.

For in-depth details on these and other strategies discussed by the panelists, please listen to the archived webinar (you will need Windows Media Player 9 or higher); and follow the #bwevents hashtag on Twitter to keep up with future Business Wire events.


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