(Guest post by Leslie Dagg, Account Supervisor)
With 2013 quickly approaching, you might be taking a look back on 2012 to take stock of successes, lessons learned and improvements to be made. During this review, setting aside time to review your company’s website – and most importantly, the online newsroom section – can be valuable.
Having a newsroom and simply posting occasional updates just isn’t enough in today’s 24/7 “I need it NOW” news cycle.
There is an increasing need for accessible, updated content, and journalists – especially digital journalists and bloggers – are in a frantic quest for the information they seek.
If a reporter needs background information, images, video, people to quote, etc. they usually need it FAST. They’ll likely turn to the web first. Even when a reporter doesn’t have a split-second deadline, making your company’s information accessible and worthwhile can help build solid relationships with journalists over time.
So as you look to build momentum for the new year, here are some tips to help make your newsroom a premium asset to your targeted media:
1. Don’t Hide Your Contact Information. Make sure to list contact names, phone numbers and email addresses so reporters can reach the right person. One of the most frustrating things to encounter on a website: a general, nameless, indirect “contact us” form listed as the only contact option. Avoid this at all costs.
2. About You. Post a corporate fact sheet which gives a quick, accurate overview and perspective on the company in terms of size, revenues, employment, products / services, markets served, locations, etc., all in one place. Reporters find facts and numbers like these essential to building their stories.
3. Put a Face On It. Include short biographies and a professional photo for each of your top executives and spokespeople – list their backgrounds, specialties and achievements to help introduce them to media visitors.
4. Gallery of Options. Don’t underestimate how much hi-res images, video clips and other multimedia options can help you gain media coverage and repeat visitors. Remember our mantra: Everyone reads pictures. Media need these at their fingertips. Maintaining an accessible multimedia gallery section is absolutely key.
5. Update. Update again. Update some more. Be sure to keep your online newsroom current and fresh with new entries to help guarantee more consistent traffic and to prevent media from using out-of-date or incorrect information. Update bio sketches for executives as soon as they’re named to a new position, keep financial figures up-to-date, and post background and images on new products as soon as they are available.