Social media is changing the way we communicate. That’s a fact.
News releases are dead. That’s an opinion.
After reading pr and press pundits thoughts on this statement over the last year, I decided it was time to ask my reporter friends here in Indianapolis. I really want to know so I can give advice to clients that’s sound and based on what people working in newsrooms want. So in December I created a poll that I sent out to them. Among the questions , “When you read this statement, what do you think: News Releases Are Dead.” The answer option was opened ended. Here’s what they said.
- I disagree with it.
- It doesn’t mean anything to me.
- Uh, no, they’re not.
- News releases aren’t dead; they can be great tips.
- Paper news releases are in essence dead. Nowadays reporters rely on social media such as Facebook, Twitter and other sites to get news tips on stories.
While the delivery mechanisms and communication systems have changed from mail to email over the last 15 years and more reporters want tips via social media, here’s the reality of the news release straight from the reporter: 100% of my 13 reporter friends still use news releases for story leads, tips, general news of the day. These professionals are still looking for the same things I looked for when I did my stint in a newsroom way back in the 1990s…. is it local, is there a trend, how does it impact my audience.
Bottom line, make the release relevant and follow up with more information that you know the reporters want… you’ll score ink whether it’s in newsprint or online!
Input on this topic is welcome.