BW Fun Fact: Business Wire Reaches Journalists With a Combo of High Tech and High Touch

May 20, 2011

When Business Wire launched it’s website in 1995 there was a lot of excitement around sending the press release via email to the media. Previously, all major media points received news from us through a satellite fed teleprinter while many others received local area or industry news via fax.

From the beginning we wanted to make it easy for journalists to see our news.  So we kept diversifying our news delivery options.  Today, our BW created and patented delivery platform–News Express–as well as hundreds of dual-hosted websites, RSS, FTP, Twitter feeds, mobile distribution and even some diehard fax subscriptions are among the channels our news arrives in newsrooms, and on desktops, tablets and the mobile phones of journalists, bloggers, financial analysts and news consumers globally.  None of these methods is more popular than our PressPass email delivery.

Our first customized email delivery product “Email Select” was limited to 500 email addresses and a short list of industry keywords.  This tight limit concerned Business Wire Founder, Lorry Lokey who monitored every journalist name and email address added to our new distribution list–presumably to remove anyone not worthy (though this never happened).

Today, tens of thousands of journalists are registered for our PressPass email service and yes they’re still vetted, verified and approved by a member of our media relations team.  How do we do it?

With unlimited choices for keyword search term selection and news customization, journalists are able to create and recieve feeds that are more targeted then ever.   Those enhancements in technology allow our team to focus on the relationship aspects of our role in the news process and keep the media and communications communities satisfied.

If you’re a member of the media and would like to subscribe to receive a customized news feed from Business Wire, you can register for PressPass or subscribe to our RSS or Twitter feeds or even subscribe to the BW Mobile site to view your custom feed on your mobile device.


Consider Daylight Savings Time When Sending Press Releases This Weekend

November 5, 2010
Most areas of the United States are “falling back” an hour at 2 a.m. local time on Sunday, November 7.   Please make note should you be distributing  news releases this weekend.
 
Here’s a great reference to see which geographic locations change when.  For those sending press releases to Business Wire this weekend, no worries.   The time zones in our Business Wire interface update automatically to reflect relevant changes on Sunday.
 
Also keep in mind that daylight savings time has already ended in Europe.   As of Sunday London will once again be five hours ahead of eastern standard time and Paris will be six hours ahead.
Enjoy your 25-hour day!
 
 

New Client Success Story: Taxi Magic

October 28, 2010

by Cecile Oreste, Media Relations Specialist/DC

Taxi Magic is revolutionizing the taxi industry through innovative technology products. The company is part of Alexandria, Va. based RideCharge Inc., which started operations in February 2007. Although Taxi Magic has been around for a few years, this is the company’s first time using Business Wire to distribute its news.

Only two days after sending a news release about its new Passenger Information Monitor (PIM), Taxi Magic was featured on “Washington Business Tonight,” a program aired on local television station TBD-TV. The segment featured an interview with Taxi Magic President Sanders Partee and was later posted on the network’s corresponding website, TBD.com, where visitors could easily share the story through social media networks like Twitter and Facebook.

According to Jay McClary, Vice President of Marketing for Taxi Magic, the release focused on the idea of innovation as well as the convenience that comes from using Taxi Magic products. “We are really trying to improve the taxi experience for passengers, and that seemed to resonate with the TBD reporter,” he said.

The Taxi Magic success story shows that a quality release goes a long way. Jay gave TBD-TV a reason to read beyond the dateline and was readily available when the reporter called him about the release. Do you have a success story you want to share with Business Wire? If so, contact media.relations@businesswire.com.

Taxi Magic Release – http://bizwire.pr/zwPsh

TBD-TV Coverage – http://www.tbd.com/articles/2010/10/taxi-magic-will-give-d-c-cab-riders-new-options-for-entertainment-payment-methods-18783.html


Multimedia Still Makes Better Press Releases

October 21, 2010

by Joseph Miller, EON Product Manager, Business Wire Austin

Business Wire’s distribution and technology products have evolved considerably throughout the years (we’re celebrating our 50th anniversary next year!).

With the advent of Internet distribution and other standards along with prolific creation of digital media such as photos and videos, we’ve been quick to adopt multimedia distribution solutions along with more traditional “text” distribution of our press releases.  Today, we distribute hundreds, if not thousands, of releases with attached photos or videos every week.

And while it will likely always be true that journalists do not prefer to be bombarded with attachments, a succinct release with links to relevant multimedia and related resources can be extremely useful in telling your stories.  This is especially true as newsrooms continue to evolve and journalists across the world are being asked to do more with less every day.

With that said, let’s get on to the data!  Thinking of the impact multimedia has on release performance, we recently examined data from our internal NewsTrak reports across all Business Wire releases year to date.  One metric we examined was the Top 500 releases based on “release reads”, an analog to page views, of each release.  Of the top 500, a full 23% of our Top 500 releases include multimedia (photos & videos beyond logos), while only 5% of all releases include multimedia.

From this, we can conclude that including multimedia greatly increases your chances of distributing a “hit release.”

Beyond that, we looked at the average number of release reads across all releases.  Once we segmented out releases with and without multimedia, we found that the average release with multimedia has received 1.7 times more release reads than those without.

So there you have it.  If you want to increase the odds of your press releases outperforming their peers, it’s a great idea to add multimedia.


Business Wire – Our “Raison D’etre”

July 14, 2010

by Cathy Baron Tamraz, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Business Wire

Cathy Baron Tamraz

BW Chairman & CEO Cathy Baron Tamraz

SEC Chairman Mary Schapiro, in prepared remarks to the Society of Corporate Secretaries and Governance Professionals last Friday, stated the SEC is intent on ensuring that all investors have access to a highly complex and technologically sophisticated trading market.

We at Business Wire could not agree more — that’s been OUR intent as well for the past 50 years — to support and enhance full and fair disclosure, via our own patented Internet-based news delivery platform that ensures that material news is available to all market participants in an easily accessible and digestible format.

With all the hoopla about new newswire models, I thought it might be useful to provide some perspective on why we invented our business model and, further, the myriad and increasing benefits we provide to the investor relations and public relations communities.  There are two primary reasons companies use a commercial newswire: DISCLOSURE and DISTRIBUTION.  While the delivery mechanisms have radically transformed (from messenger, to mail, to dictate, to fax, to FM sideband, to satellite, to internet, mobile and more), the goals are everlasting — transparency and eyeballs.

It’s significant to note that Business Wire has been on the bleeding edge of this technological change.  In fact, most of the newswire technology changes these past 50 years have been driven by our company (via our proprietary internet patents and many other firsts in the industry). Having been born in the SF Bay Area, we live and breathe innovation and technology; it’s simply what we do and how we view our business model — everchanging and everlasting.

THE MANTRA:

Companies use Business Wire to both satisfy their regulatory requirements AND get the word out quickly and simultaneously to all market participants.  When you use Business Wire, you are assured of satisfying disclosure and getting the broadest distribution possible via our proprietary, secure network.  The benefit of ubiquitous distribution is that anyone interested has the opportunity to: buy a product, buy/sell a stock, attend an event, analyze a company, report on a story, blog, tweet, etc.

When your news is on Business Wire, everyone can access it via their choice of platform — and, most importantly, rely on the veracity of the information.

And therein lies the power of our brand — TRUST.

AT THE CORE:

Disclosure:

Material news is clearly a company’s most important news; simple logic suggests that it deserves the broadest possible distribution, maximum visibility, an authoritative, credible editorial environment and a permanent, easily accessible archive for future reference.  Business Wire has always been a convenient, effective and cost-efficient way to accomplish each of these critical objectives.

Business Wire is also a strong proponent of the spirit and intent of the SEC’s Regulation FD: full and fair disclosure means that all market participants have simultaneous and real-time access to corporate news that may influence their investment decisions.  The integrity of our financial marketplace is predicated on the principle of fairness and transparency; and that’s our sweet spot.

Business Wire’s proprietary NX platform (awarded U.S. and Canadian patents, and patent-pending in Europe) provides for equal access by institutional and individual investors.  We have been sanctioned as a recognized regulatory disclosure service in multiple international jurisdictions; as such our network security, redundant technical systems and operational procedures are audited annually by the world’s leading accounting firms to confirm Business Wire’s strict and continued compliance with rigorous approval criteria.  Simply put, it’s the best system out there — and built in-house, too.

With nearly 200 editors in 21 newsrooms worldwide, we authenticate and validate our members, vet copy for accuracy and legitimacy and catch countless client errors.  The coding, keywords and meta-tagging (XHTML) that we add to each release are critically important in how copy is processed by advanced search engines, enterprise IT systems, algo-traders and databases. While much of this behind-the-scenes process is invisible to issuers and investors, it is absolutely critical to the proper parsing and distribution of information given today’s highly intricate IT network architecture.

Lastly, we won’t outsource disclosure.  It’s way too complex to leave to someone else or put on auto-pilot.

Distribution:

The other major reason clients use a newswire is distribution; there is no better way to get your message out than Business Wire.  We have the most expansive global reach in the industry, capitalizing on strategic relationships with scores of national and international news agencies, major web portals, aggregators and, of course, our own robust and highly viewed website.

Most recently, we’ve leveraged our reach to include the mobile apps of many of our news agency partners, including Agence France-Presse, Associated Press, Canwest and more.  Business Wire provides anywhere, anytime, up-to-the-minute access in multiple languages via a choice of mobile platforms.  This is just another example of how we have embraced the latest technologies to address the shifting work habits of the on-the-go professional and retail investor — and to make information easily available to all market participants.

Business Wire has also integrated social media and search engine optimization into every distribution, exponentially heightening the online profile of each release.  Our advanced metrics provide clients with valuable statistical usage data and online posting reports.  Yes, it really is all about pickup; the more eyeballs, the more pickup — which is the start of the engagement process.  In our business, less is definitely not more.

We live by the Warren Buffett quote: Price is what you pay, value is what you get.  Our mantra is to continually increase the value we provide for our members.  As we approach our 50th anniversary, our motivation and commitment is to continue to be the best that we can be.  Our passion is to be the industry’s technology leader, and to offer the most innovative and enterprising products and services.  And we are equally passionate about our clients, who have trusted us with their important news for nearly a half-century.  Our goal is to continue to exceed their expectations.

While Business Wire has continuously evolved with bleeding edge technology, the technology exists to build upon our core business principles: to always provide the gold standard in disclosure and global news dissemination.

Stay tuned……the best is yet to come.


Use Google Trends to Find the Best Time to Send Your Press Release

June 3, 2010


It’s the age old question.  As long as companies and PR practitioners have been sending releases, everyone has wanted to know when is the best time to send my release? In fact, one of our most popular blog posts took this question on three years ago.

Everyone still wants to know because there is really no true right answer.  Hindsight is 20/20 and it’s easy to research the past and give an armchair opinion, but until Google starts mining data directly from our minds (Google Thoughts anyone?) predicting the future will continue to be a difficult endeavor.  However, with the power of free tools and site search it’s become relatively easy to get a read on the present and measure short term opportunities.

Here’s my basic premise: using tools like Google Trends and site search on the major press release distribution sites like Business Wire to gauge the amount of competition, you can increase your chances of catching a wave and contributing to a hot story.

Sometimes the trends are obvious.  You can tell from this chart that Father’s Day trends upwards as the holiday approaches (it’s June 20th in the US this year).

Searching headlines on Business Wire shows only a handful of Father’s Day related headlines so far in May and June.  To me, this looks like a great opportunity for interesting Father’s Day stories to get the jump on the trend.  If I were creating such a story, it might be a good idea to get it out now or keep watching the wires and distribute it just as things start to pick up.

Read the rest of this entry »


Viva the Press Release! Social Media Diehard Hails “Traditional” Press Release and Paid Wire Services

May 19, 2010

by Monika Maeckle, Vice President of New Media

“I think now, more than ever, traditional press releases matter and that wire services like Business Wire are worth the expense – or rather – the investment.”–Alan Weinkrantz

We don’t pretend to be objective about press releases, and indeed a quote from our boss Warren Buffett, seems appropriate here:  “Don’t ask the barber if you need a haircut.”

That said, it’s refreshing to see a PR practitioner who’s been  embracing social media for five years laud the attributes of  the “traditional” press release as well as those of the “paid wire services”–in this case, yours truly: Business Wire.

Alan Weinkrantz, a high tech PR consultant in San Antonio, is a contributing business columnist for the San Antonio Express-News and a peripatetic poster on Facebook, Twitter, Posterous, LinkedIn, Flickr, his own blog and elsewhere.  I often wonder if the guy ever sleeps.   As he details in a blog post , Alan used Business Wire to issue this press release for his client, DenimGroup, a San Antonio-based IT consultancy and security software firm.

Typically Alan pitches stories via email to a targeted list of media, bloggers and industry analysts and points to the release on social platforms like Twitter and Facebook after it’s been disseminated by Business Wire.

“Business Wire is our core distribution platform for reaching journalists, analysts and bloggers who search for key words in their area of interest.  We also use social sites to supplement our efforts and hashtags on Twitter so we can be found this way,” says Alan.  “Business Wire provides confidence that we’re  helping the client populate the Internet, major search engines and industry sites that we can’t reach on our own, no matter how many pitches and phone calls we make.”

Alan’s Business Wire distribution hit a homerun for his client with an application story in RFID Journal.

He’s quick to point out that the release itself did not carry the story.  “It led to the opportunity,” he said, adding that when the lead came in,  he followed up to coordinate story development with the client and the PR teams involved. “It was a great story that brought attention to an industry looking for innovative and secure ways to integrate RFID.”

And that’s how it can work.  Thanks for sharing the story,  Alan.  We agree with you:  “Long live the press release. Viva wire services (paid ones I might add) like Business Wire.”

 


PR Peeps Poll: 30% Access News and Press Releases via Mobile Devices

February 22, 2010
The periodic PR Peeps Poll results are in and reflect a growing move by professional communicators to access news and press release content from mobile devices.   Thirty percent of 297 polled said they do just that “all the time.”
 
They’re not alone.   Smartphones will outnumber desktop shipments by 2012, according to a recent report by Morgan Stanley.   And a study by Ruder Finn says 64% of mobile internet users use mobile devices to educate themselves by getting news and other information.  Another interesting stat: Smartphone owners use those devices more than half the time for data rather than voice. 
 
Just like everyone else, professional communicators are checking news, press releases and other content from their mobile devices.  Here’s the stats from our poll, which queried 297 professional communicators via our webinar attendees and Twitter:
 
Do you monitor news and press releases on a mobile device?
 
 
  • 88,   or 30% said    Yes, all the time
  • 85,   or 28% said     Occasionally
  • 124, or 42% said     No, I’m not there yet.
 
To those who participated, thank you–-and how about helping with our next PR Peeps Poll:   Apps?  There’s a poll for that.   How many apps do you have on your phone?  Please let us know.

297 respondents via Twitter and Business Wire webinar polls.  Poll conducted  December 10,2009 - February 18, 2010.


High Performance Press Releases: Getting Your Release Found, Seen & Shared

December 8, 2009

Business Wire San Antonio hosted back-to-back Austin and San Antonio seminars November 18th and November 19th, 2009. Attendees were provided tips to help optimize future press releases so they are found, seen and shared.

The well-rounded panel included Bill Leake, Founder, President and CEO of Apogee Search, the most prominent search engine marketing firm in the Southwest; Charla Adams, Communications Manager of Sweet Leaf Tea, a Business Wire client completely immersed in social media; and Clint Howell, New Media Specialist and Senior Account Executive at Business Wire.

Bill Leake, Founder, President and CEO of Apogee Search recommends:

  • Get someone else to sing your song and it’s better than singing it yourself – the web is 20% your content/80% what the rest of the world says about you.
    If nothing else, get the keywords right – choose keywords that matter (the ones people are actually using to search not what you think they’re searching) by using a keyword search tool.
  • The web is not just textual – create content with photos and video.
  • If you have a call to action in your press release/message, build conversion pages – you have them there, now what do you want them to do?
  • Don’t forget direct media pitches and don’t forget the bloggers (research beyond Technorati Top 50 and you’ll find the fat middle of niche bloggers that cover you and your industry).
  • The future owner of social media will be PR because it’s a better fit than advertising – PR is all about conversations and dialogue.

Charla Adams, Communications Manager of Sweet Leaf Tea recommends:

  • Sweet Leaf Tea uses a variety of resources to send their communication message – 15 employees tweet, they have Facebook Fan pages, blogs, YouTube channel, MySpace profile, Flickr photo pages, RSS feeds and even Sweet Leaf Tea TV and Sweet Leaf Radio.
  • Tweet/post/repurpose your press release permalink (especially if you have an EON release, which is posted forever and can act as a free-standing webpage – Sweet Leaf Tea’s EON release got 2x the hits of the wire version because Charla pushed it out).
  • Gauge your success by the level of participation vs. demographic breakdowns because someone outside your demographic target might be your most active engager – are they pushing out your message, writing a blog post for you, writing about you?

Clint Howell, New Media Specialist and Senior Account Executive recommends:

  • Media is posting your news as you write it,  which is a testament to having good content in your releases and links to further details on your site.
  • You can build your release for search and should.
  • The headline is the most important piece of your release, the first paragraph second because websites/search engines use them as your title and meta description tags.

If you would like Bill’s presentation or the seminar takeaway packet with Joseph Miller’s SEO Tip Jar, please email Barbie Dunn, barbie.dunn@businesswire.com.
More questions? Contact Clint Howell: clint.howell@businesswire.com

Local Business Wire offices host several events each year on PR, IR, SEO & media topics. Check out the Business Wire Events page to find upcoming events in your area.
Follow Business Wire events on Twitter! Hash tag #bwevents


Upcoming Business Wire Events – November 9 Edition

November 9, 2009

bwupcomingeventsheader2Join 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:

Social Media ROI: Being Seen is Not Enough

Hosted by Business Wire Cleveland

Your organization has started blogging, tweeting and updating your Facebook status, but is it working? Get ready to throw out your clips, circulation numbers and impression statistics and join us for an exciting panel discussion on social media ROI measurement. Our panel of Cleveland’s most savvy social media experts will provide you with advice on setting goals for your social media campaign and arm you with the tools you will need to generate both quantitative and qualitative results. Michael DeAloia, “Tech Czar”, moderates a panel including: John Heaney, Vice President, NESCO and Principal, Orange Envelopes; Dominic Litten, Senior Account Executive, Fathom SEO; George Nemeth, Chief Blogging Officer, Brewed Fresh Daily;  and Jason Therrien, President, thunder::tech.

Thursday, November 12th at 7:30 am ET

The City Club of Cleveland
850 Euclid Ave., Second Floor
Cleveland, OH 44114
To register: Please RSVP to Melissa Chambers at Melissa.Chambers@businesswire.com or call 800-769-0220

Meet the Media Luncheon

Hosted by Business Wire Charlotte

Mark your calendar to join Business Wire in Durham for lunch and a panel discussion regarding the best practices for corporate communications professionals within the tech/biotech community. Meet Frank Vinluan from the Triangle Business Journal as well as Tyler Dukes from News 14 Carolina and learn tips on how to pitch your company’s news. Frank Vinluan’s coverage includes Biotechnology, Life Sciences, Technology, Telecom and Utilities. Tyler Dukes is Web Producer and a freelance reporter specializing in multimedia stories about science and technology.  The panel includes: Tyler Dukes, Web Producer, News 14 Carolina; Frank Vinluan, Tech/Biotech writer, Triangle Business Journal; and Allan Maurer, Editor, TechJournal South. This event is free for Business Wire members and $10 for non-members.

Thursday, November 12th at 11:30 am ET
Sheraton Imperial Hotel & Convention Center
4700 Emperor Blvd.
Durham, NC 27703
I-40 at Exit 282 (Page Rd.)
To register: Please RSVP to Angela Hayworth at angela.hayworth@businesswire.com or 704-347-1590

Press Releases: The Road Not Taken

Hosted by Business Wire Nashville

Need to add more life to your press release?  Since most press releases do not venture beyond plain text, the “road not taken” can earn you big media results.  Join Tonya Bowen, Regional Manager of Business Wire in this enlightening workshop where you will learn how partnering your release with multimedia, stylistic elements, and SEO techniques can make your press release live BEYOND the day trip! This event is free.

Wednesday, November 18th at 11:30 am ET
McCormick & Schmick’s Seafood Restaurant
719 Shades Creek Parkway
Birmingham, AL 35209
To register: Please RSVP to Brent Blackburn at brent.blackburn@businesswire.com or 615.661.6123

High Performance Press Releases: Getting Your Release Found, Seen & Shared

Hosted by
Business Wire Austin
Business Wire San Antonio

Get more mileage out of your PR efforts by filling your press releases with power-boosted SEO gasoline. Join speakers Bill Leake from Apogee Search, Charla Adams from Sweet Leaf Tea and Clint Howell from Business Wire for a discussion and tips on how you can optimize your press releases to make them search engine friendly and easier to be found, seen and shared.  This event is free for Business Wire members and $20 for non-members.

Wednesday, November 18th at 12:00 pm CT
the Gallery at Chez Zee
5406 Balcones Dr.
Austin, TX 78731
To register: Please RSVP to Barbie Dunn at Barbie.Dunn@businesswire.com or 210.527.9100

Thursday, November 19, 2009 at 12:00 pm CT
The Quarry Golf Club
444 East Basse Road
San Antonio, TX 78209
To register: Please RSVP to Barbie Dunn at Barbie.Dunn@businesswire.com or 210.527.9100

Social Media: Your Questions Answered

Hosted by Business Wire Seattle

Learn how today’s savvy experts got started in social media and what advice they have for beginners. You’ll learn valuable lessons on interacting in social mediums like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.  The panel is lead by moderator Hallie Janssen, Vice President, Anvil Media, Inc. and includes Carri Bugbee, Owner, Big Deal PR, Inc.; Marshall Kirkpatrick, VP of Content Development and Lead Blogger, ReadWriteWeb; and Imelda Khoo, E-Marketing Manager of Tektronix. This event is free for Business Wire members and $20 for non-members.

Thursday, November 19, 2009 at 11:30 am PT
Governor Hotel
614 SW 11th Avenue
Portland, OR 97205
To register: Please RSVP to Lauren Linscheid at Lauren.Linscheid@businesswire.com


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