Seattle Journalists Offer Insights; Pitching Advice at Media Roundtable

January 20, 2016

Matt Allinson Bio Pic

by Matt Allinson – Media Relations Manager, International Markets

Seven superb Seattle journalists assembled downtown on a gray December day for Business Wire Seattle’s media “speed dating” event. The event provided an opportunity for those who work with the media and/or who are interested in the media to have small group discussions with the journalists who matter to them most. The goal, as always, was to foster education and understanding between the media and PR/IR community (as well as with the public at large).

Media at Event

From L to R: Garrett Rudolph (Editor – Marijuana Venture Magazine); Taylor Soper (Reporter – Geekwire.com); Michelle Flandreau (Producer – KING5); Lauren Mang (Digital Editor – Seattle Magazine); Roger Nyhus (Moderator – President & CEO of Nyhus Communications); Sara Lerner (Reporter – KIRO Radio); Ashley Stewart (Reporter – Puget Sound Business Journal); Rachel Lerman (Reporter – The Seattle Times)

The journalists varied widely in terms of the media they work for, the industries and companies they cover, and the way they do their jobs. We had a marijuana industry magazine editor; a tech reporter for a start-up; a long time public radio reporter who recently switched to commercial radio; a television producer; a digital editor; a finance reporter; and a tech reporter from the state’s biggest paper.

The journalists offered many excellent tips for interacting with media and pitching stories. Here are some you should remember:

  • Press releases are great … particularly those that include multimedia … but a personalized email pitch or a follow-up call that comes with it can make a big difference.
  • Know who you’re pitching and what they write … take the time to form a relationship if you want the reporter to cover you now or in the future.
  • Taylor Soper of Geekwire.com pulls two to three stories a week from Twitter. It’s increasingly becoming one of his favorite ways to find story ideas.
  • Radio interviews … Sara Lerner of KIRO Radio always prefers an in-studio interview, but recognizes that short notice can make that difficult. A great alternative, she says, is to use Skype, because you don’t need a microphone and it resolves the problem of cell phone quality and the scarcity of landlines.
  • If you live in a marijuana-friendly state, take note of the publications focusing on that industry. Marijuana Venture Magazine editor Garrett Rudolph said his magazine started as a 8-page black and white publication in the spring of 2014 and is now a 120+ page glossy.
  • How does the Seattle Times‘ tech reporter Rachel Lerman find stories? For one, she scans Business Wire’s daily PressPass feed. She also has various alerts set up on all the companies that she covers.Rachel
  • A major pet peeve amongst several of the journalists in attendance was lack of an available contact. Too many times, they say, have they received an interesting press release only to call the contact number on the bottom and get no answer. Lack of availability will often lead to a lack of coverage.
  • One way to ensure reporters always have access to additional information, images and company contacts is to include a link to your organization’s online newsroom. These sites are crucial for reporters, as well as analysts and other decision makers when looking for more information about your brand.

For more tips and and to better understand the tools journalists are currently using, download the 2015 Business Wire Media Survey.

Click here to share these media relations tips on Twitter:  http://ctt.ec/d5c3w

 


Looking Ahead: Business Wire in 2016

January 4, 2016

A special message from Cathy Baron Tamraz, CEO and Chairman, and Gregg Castano, President of Business Wire.

Change is a constant in our industry and 2015 was no exception. While new communications platforms and technologies are launched with stunning regularity, the core premise of our business, the act of sharing your stories with the audiences that matter most, has remained the same. This year, Business Wire has invested in capabilities that make your news more shareable, measurable, secure and engaging. We like to say Business Wire is “Where your news is made” and our commitment to living up to that statement drives us forward every day.

Where your news is made

Business Wire’s evolving commitment to our client’s news is best illustrated by the recent launch of “BizWireTV”, a video news collaboration with Al Roker Entertainment. The twice-weekly digital video series covers trending stories distributed via Business Wire, using media analytics and social monitoring tools to spotlight stories with broad reader resonance. BizWireTV profiles disruptive startups, hot new products, business trends and companies to watch. While story selection is determined by reader engagement analysis, all segments are based on releases published across the Business Wire network.

With the rise of video as a popular asset, Business Wire provides a unique opportunity for coverage. Business Wire is the only commercial news wire accessible via AP Video Hub, the leading resource for online publishers and major broadcasters worldwide. AP Video Hub provides broadcast quality video to digital publishers, news portals, and broadcasters, including 350 of the world’s largest media companies in 100 countries.

AP Video Hub

Videos distributed by Business Wire now receive global visibility via AP Video Hub

We also realize that today it is all about return-on-investment; our measurement reports are continuously refined to provide metrics that validate the success of your communications campaign. Our goal is to provide the tools and turnkey solutions that will create greater awareness of client content via the expanding range of platforms used by information consumers.

A key competitive advantage is our international distribution network. We augmented our Brazil reach via a multichannel platform that includes DINO, Brazil’s leading press release portal. We also launched 19 language-based Twitter feeds, including Chinese, Japanese, and Spanish. Business Wire offers more than 80+ Twitter feeds — at no additional cost — amplifying the visibility of our clients’ news to an ever-increasing audience.

Lastly, we maintained our thought-leadership programs, including publications, surveys, and webinars. Publications included our“2015 Media Survey,” a “Complete Guide to Modern Public Relations,” and “Let’s Get Visual: Multimedia and the News Release.” We look forward to more engaging programs and professional development guides in the year ahead.

With your business needs guiding our efforts, we are focused on identifying emerging platforms, while maintaining the core values that clearly differentiate Business Wire from its competition: client service, local newsrooms/editorial accuracy, and value-based pricing.

We again thank you for your business and express our appreciation for your trust and confidence.

Our best wishes for 2016, hoping that it will be a year of peace, health and prosperity for all.

Sincerely,

Cathy Baron Tamraz, CEO, Business Wire and Gregg Castano, President, Business Wire
Cathy_Baron_Tamraz Gregg_Castano


16 Easy Ways to Fix Your PR Program for 2016

December 28, 2015

By Serena Ehrlich, Director of Social/Evolving Media, Business Wire

In the last year, PR has changed. Drastically. If you are still distributing text only news releases, aren’t measuring your inbound traffic, not leveraging the power of social shares or are still thinking that media relations is a mystery, you have a lot to learn before we move into 2016.

2016 is the year of content amplification. As companies create more and more news and brand content, they are realizing that there is no such thing as good content, only seen content. Is your content being seen?

As 2015 comes to a close, we at Business Wire want to share the many ways you can utilize public relations and newswires to amplify your news content to ensure you are reaching your entire targeted audience, ultimately increasing impact and ROI.

Introducing our brand new weekly news series, BizWireTV, an embarrassment of riches.

9 PR Hacks to Increase Impact of Your PR Program

Optimizing Headlines

 4 Times Newswires Resulted in Big Success

Where your news is made

What is Business Wire? Why Amplify Your News?

We at Business Wire will continue to monitor and share emerging technical and behavioral trends that impact news distribution and news consumption in 2016. Stay ahead of the game by signing up for our blog RSS feed or social accounts: Twitter, Facebook, YouTube or LinkedIN. 2016 is going to be a great year for PR professionals. We’re excited to be in the trenches with you.

Click here to share this post on Twitter: http://ctt.ec/se8cQ

 


Agence France-Presse Shares: How to Work with Global Newswires

November 19, 2015

Legendary news agency, AFP, opens up to discuss their organizational structure, Agence_France-Presse_Logo.svgcoverage criteria, and practical tips on how  to build a relationship and work more effectively with their journalists. This is a must-listen-to webinar and can fundamentally transform the impact of your global communications.

To listen to the full webinar click here  

Agence France-Presse [AFP] is one of the world’s largest and most prestigious news agencies, with a network of 200 bureaus generating some 5,000 stories per day. Despite its prestige and influence, many communications professionals, particularly in North America, are largely unfamiliar with the scope of AFP’s geographic footprint, and its role in shaping the global news agenda.

Speakers included:

Moderator:  Raschanda Hall, Global Media Relations Manager, Business Wire


Learn the Newswire’s Role in Making Your News with this Visual Journey

November 4, 2015

What role exactly does a newswire play in the journey of your news? An announcement makes an expedition before going public and influencing potential clients and consumers. That expedition involves many pit stops, including the addition of multimedia and determining the proper circuits to best reach interested parties.

Business Wire created a video to demonstrate the exact journey your news takes before becoming news.

You can view that video here and learn about each step in detail by reading Serena Ehrlich’s breakdown of How a News Release Becomes a News Story.

Serena Ehrlich is the Director of Social and Evolving Media at Business Wire and was one of the authors of Let’s Get Visual: Multimedia and the News Release, a free white paper identifying the science and trends behind multimedia’s impact on the success of news releases. Download this paper now: Let’s Get Visual!


A Behind the Scenes Look at How Newswires Distribute News Releases

October 26, 2015

Sometimes the best way to learn how something works is by watching it in action. Business Wire wants people to know exactly how news is made and have captured the process in an exciting new video.


What starts off as an announcement goes through a process of editing and enhancement before entering a hub. Think of it as a digital metro station that leads to stops around the world where your information travels to journalists, bloggers, reporters, and other media professionals and publications.

Key takeaways from the video about the news making process:

  • A news release should go through several drafts to ensure maximum readability and accuracy
  • Know (and write for) your target audience
  • Include multimedia such as photographs, graphics, and if possible, videos to increase release views
  • Measure the results to gauge impact of your news

In order to make the news it’s important to know how news is made. Learn the exact steps and make sure to maximize the impact of your next announcement.


Business Wire’s 2015 Media Survey Reveals Best Practices in Media Relations

October 20, 2015

By Serena Ehrlich, Director of Social & Evolving Media, Business Wire
Earlier this year, Business Wire asked reporters worldwide their preference for being pitched – from the type of news they prefer, to best practices for continuing relationships after coverage was secured.

The results of the Business Wire 2015 North American Media Survey provide a strong road map for communicators to follow when looking to increase the visibility of their organization via news coverage.

Click here to download the full survey results now:  http://bit.ly/1hOkatq

Media_Relations_Info_FINALStep 1:  Write an interesting release
This may sound easy enough, but in order to catch a reporter’s attention, your news release needs to contain the information they want to cover.

When you craft your next news release, focus on the breaking news and interesting story angles as well as quotes to increase the likelihood of pick up.

Step 2:  Multimedia is no longer optional
As more and more reporters are providing news content for online sources, there is a growing need for multimedia.  What kind of multimedia? The element most preferred is a photographic with graphics, videos, infographics, logos and audio files rounding out the list.

Why is multimedia so important? As we discuss in Let’s Get Visual, multimedia elements allow readers to engage and absorb information in new ways, building deeper emotional connections between the reader and the news story.  And reporters are not just relying on you to provide them with supporting multimedia – more than 64% of reporters are creating their own to supplement content.

In short, if you want to tell your story in your voice, supply reporters with multimedia to ensure the highest possible adoption of your news.

Step 3:  Your News Release Distribution Service Matters
News distribution services such as Business Wire play an important role in the news ecosystem. 63% of media respondents noted that their jobs would be harder without newswires to vet and deliver news releases.  Commercial newswires provide media outlets with an ongoing stream of trusted, breaking news in a variety of formats, allowing reporters to access and produce news coverage throughout the day.  And what newswire do media outlets trust the most?  At 67%, Business Wire continues to be the top newswire of choice for today’s media.

Step 4:  Social Pitching is Not Advised
Despite the use of social media for research purposes or for identifying hot news trends, 75% of reporters said they do not want to receive pitches via social media

Rather than pitch reporters via social channels, use the channels to identify who is writing about your industry and to gain a better understanding to the types of news your top reporters are interested in writing and sharing with their readers.

Step 5:  The Role of Your Online Newsroom
Where do reporters turn to research your pitch? Your online newsroom!

When breaking news hits the reporter’s desk, the next step is for the reporter to research the news, the company and the impact your news has on their readers. 77% of reporters turn to company online newsrooms to find the information they need to turn your news release into a headline.  Frequently updated newsrooms provide reporters, and other interested parties, on-demand access to the news releases, multimedia and other branded content – perfect for reporters responsible for writing news stories in a 24/7 world.

Bonus tip? Share your coverage!
The top metric for judging the success of a news story continues to be inbound traffic to that piece. Help reporters meet this metric by creating a strong coverage sharing program to not only increase views, but awareness of your news.

Securing coverage in a selfie world is not easy, but by following the steps provided in the 2015 Business Wire Media Survey you can build stronger relationships with your key media targets and increase the chance to receive more media coverage.

Click here to share these survey results on Twitter:  http://ctt.ec/3Cyhv

Download the complete 2015 Business Wire Media Survey now:  http://bit.ly/1hOkatq


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