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12th September 2012

Content Marketing World – Lessons learned

This year’s Content Marketing World conference was held last week in Columbus, OH and many of the socialmedia stars were there.

Here are some of the key takeaways:

From Jason Miller of Marketo:
Only 36% of businesses believe their content marketing is effective. Back in the day advertisers used to lament that they knew only 50% of their advertising was working, they just didn’t know which 50%.   So while marketers are hot for content marketing, two thirds of them are flying blind.

I’d be prepared to bet that the 36% who are effective base their content on research and have a solid content strategy

CMI founder Joe Pulizzi went over the CMIs report highlights:

  • 54% of businesses plan to increase spending on content marketing over the next 12 months. (Let’s hope they get a content strategy in place first, so that they have a plan in place before they spend the $$$)
  • Businesses are still struggling to find a process that works and to gain C-level buy in. (If they can show the ROI there will be no problem getting C-level buy-in.  The C-suite wants to see’ beans for beans’)
  • The biggest challenge content marketers face is producing enough content, followed closely by producing the kind of content that engages. (Producing enough content can be resolved by finding an excellent and affordable resource to help you produce content.   A sound content strategy based on listening to the right conversations will tell you what content will spark engagement)

It is surprising to me that no-one spoke about delivery and distribution of the content as a key takeaway. Looking at write ups about the speakers, I don’t see anything about delivery and distribution of the content there either.  Producing content is obviously the first step.  Then you have to deliver it.  You can post it on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube etc. But putting all your content on a content hub on your own website is something that is being overlooked. The Washington Post listed not having a content hub as one of the top 10 mistakes companies make in social media.

Turn your online newsroom into a true content hub.

 

 

 

 

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4th September 2012

Fortune’s Fastest Growing Companies #Failing Online PR

Toprank Marketing posted today about the social media use of Fortune’s fastest growing companies.  Their analysis of the top 5 show that only one of them is actively engaged on Twitter.

This post prompted me to look at something a little more basic- their online newsrooms. Even though social media is maturing and we’d hope that companies such as these would be more active in the field, good PR and providing corporate information to the media is something every company should be doing well.

The 2012 Online Newsroom and Media Relations survey shows that journalists and bloggers want:

  • Immediately visible and easy-to-find press contacts
  • Press releases by year and by category
  • Visuals -ready-to-use images and video
  • Graphics with financial information
  • Embed codes with images and videos
  • RSS feeds
  • Links to all social content
  • Tags on all content so it is easy to find in search
  • Social sharing options

 

So let’s take a look at their newsrooms and what they offer, relative to what the media is asking for today.

#1  Allergan

Press Contacts:    Yes

Press Releases in Categories:  No

Visuals with press releases:  No

RSS feeds: No

Image Gallery:  No

Video Gallery:  No

Embed codes:  No

Corporate and expert bios:  Yes

Connecting to social content: Yes, a link to their Twitter account.  It was started back in 2010 and was inactive until recently.

Social sharing options: No

SCORE: 3/10

 
 
 

#2. Susser Holdings

Susser Holdings owns the Stripes convenience stores.  Although Susser Corporate is not active in social media, the Stripes convenience stores certainly are.  However, the corporate site could improve their online newsroom to serve both investors and the media.

Press Contacts:    No.  The contacts are on each press release, but not immediately visible in the newsroom.

Press Releases in Categories:  No. And their press release are in PDFs, which require a download.

Visuals with press releases:  No

RSS feeds: No

Image Gallery:  No

Video Gallery:  No

Embed codes:  No

Corporate and expert bios:  Yes – no tin the newsroom, but on the site.

Connecting to social content: No

Social sharing options: No

SCORE: 1/10

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
#3.  CVR energy

Headquartered in Sugar Land, Texas, CVR Energy is an independent petroleum refiner and marketer of high value transportation fuels in the Midcontinent United States.  Their newsroom is very basic.

 

Press Contacts:    No.  The contacts are on each press release, but not immediately visible in the newsroom.
Press Releases in Categories:  No. And their press release are in PDFs, which require a download.

Visuals with press releases:  No

RSS feeds: No

Image Gallery:  No

Video Gallery:  No

Embed codes:  No

Corporate and expert bios:  No

Connecting to social content: No

Social sharing options: No

SCORE: 0/10

#4.   Con-Way

Con-way Inc. (NYSE:CNW) is a $5.3 billion freight transportation and logistics services company headquartered in Ann Arbor, Mich. Con-way is in the transportation and logistics industry and delivers services through its primary operating companies of Con-way Freight, Con-way Truckload, and Menlo Worldwide Logistics. Their newsroom has many of the features the media wants today.


Press Contacts:    Yes

Press Releases in Categories:  No

Visuals with press releases:  No

RSS feeds: Yes

Image Gallery:  No

Video Gallery:  No

Embed codes:  No

Corporate and expert bios:  Yes

Connecting to social content: Yes

Social sharing options: No

SCORE: 4/10

 
 

#5.  Huntsman

Huntsman is a global manufacturer and marketer of differentiated chemicals. Our operating companies manufacture products for a variety of global industries, including chemicals, plastics, automotive, aviation, textiles, footwear, paints and coatings, construction, technology, agriculture, health care, detergent, personal care, furniture, appliances and packaging.

Their investor relations section of the site has many more features than the newsroom.  They could easily add the side navigation to their newsroom section too.

 

Press Contacts:    No.  There is a contact on the press releases but not immediately visible in the newsroom.

Press Releases in Categories:  No.  The releases are not divided by years either.

Visuals with press releases:  No

RSS feeds: Yes, but it is not visible in the newsroom.  It is only available from the investor relations section of the site.

Image Gallery:  No

Video Gallery:  No.  there are presentations and webcasts in the IR section, but nothing in the newsroom

Embed codes:  No

Corporate and expert bios:  Yes, but only from the investor relations section.  There is nothing in the newsroom to tell you it is there.

Connecting to social content: No

Social sharing options: No

SCORE: 2/10

If you’d like an evaluation of your newsroom and a demo of what a newsroom ought to look like visit http://www.press-feed.com

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14th August 2012

The SEO Power of Content

Wistia

 

This is excellent advice from Rand Fishkin of SEOMoz.  He gives 5 things you can do on your page to improve the SEO value of your content and what the search engines look for in your content.

All five are relevant to the content in your newsroom:

1.  Semantic connectivity – are the words and phrases in your content related throughout the document. Search engines are getting very language-savvy.  They can tell if a piece of content has a thread of closely connected terms.

2.  Block level optimization.  Search engines index the page from top to bottom and expects the entire page talk about the topic.  Headline, subhead, first paragraph, middle section and last paragraph all have to be relevant and serve the visitors interests and the search query you are optimizing for.

3. Linking out to authoritative sites that are relevant to the content on the page.

4. Visitor Experience – usability. Never mind Big Brother – Google is watching!  They know how people respond.  Do they find what they want, do they come back, how long they stay on the page, do they complete actions on the page.

5. This one is particularly relevant for your news and blog content. Make it completely original and informative. Write great, unique content on every single page.  Post Panda Google seems to like longer copy – but it has to have value. Use longer, in-depth content that has an experiential feel.

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20th July 2012

Two Digital PR Tools

One digital PR tool every practitioner should be using is a dashboard that helps you track and monitor your online activity.  If you are working in an agency or large firm you probably have access to a sophisticated subscription service.

If you are an independent practitioner,  a small shop, or even a mid-sized business, you might find those fees too onerous and be looking at your more fortunate colleagues with more than just a hint of envy in your glance.

If that is the case, take a look at the new Netvibes dashboard.  It is quick and easy to set up, they have a slew of new widgets that make it possible to display your Facebook and Twitter feeds in the dashboard, do searches on news, blogs and microblogs, and run your replies right from the dashboard.  You can also connect and display your Google Analytics data, so you can keep track of how your content brings traffic back to your newsroom and your website.  And best of all, it is completely free!  Sweet!

 

digital PR tools dashboard

Using this dashboard in conjunction with your online newsroom extends the value of your digital PR tools.  The newsroom allows you to control your news and social content.  You can post and publish without the need to learn to program, or have to wait for IT or a webmaster.  And with the dashboard you can see where your social and news content is published, shared or commented on.  You can see who re-tweets it. And you can reply right away from the dashboard.

At PRESSfeed we assist our newsroom clients to set up a customized dashboard that works for them and we show them how to use these digital PR tools to best advantage.

 


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7th June 2011

Sharing: Social Media Currency

In a recent Pew Research report about how people get their news today, sharing was highlighted as one of the integral activities associated with news content online.

“If searching for news was the most important development of the last decade, sharing news may be among the most important of the next.”

Share This just released the results of a study of sharing behaviors which shows that while sharing is still unexplored and untapped by many publishers and advertisers, it is shaping the way users interact with each other and with content online.

Here are some of  key findings:

  • Sharing generates almost half of the traffic for websites and brands that is created by search
  • Sharing also accounts for 31 percent of referral traffic
  • Shared links are, on average, clicked on 4.9 times each
  • Everyone who shares is an influencer on that specific topic
  • Sharing is a viable marketing solution for reaching audiences when they are most receptive to a particular category of content or information

So are US companies and marketers aware of this effective social media marketing tool?  Is it indeed an unexplored and untapped opportunity?

We studied the websites of companies both large and small in the US to see if they are connecting to their social content and offering share options on their websites and online newsrooms.

  • 34% of Fortune 100 companies have share buttons on their website
  • 13% have share buttons on their newsroom content
  • 22% of INC 500 companies have share options on their website
  • 6% of INC 500 have share buttons on their newsroom content

Last year the CMO Council talked about the “Engagment Gap.”  Now we have a “Sharing Gap.”

If you would like to tap into these behaviors,  ask us for a demo of the social media newsroom.

 

 

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27th May 2011

Does Your Online Newsroom Measure Up?

What Digital Journalists Need and Want

View more presentations from Sally Falkow.
Research data from a few recent surveys about the media and journalists’ use of social media tools should be a loud call to action for PR professionals.
  1. 90% of UK journalists polled say they use social media in reporting news stories
  2. Half of them feel that PR people are not keeping up  – they say we’re not using the right digital PR resources and tools that make it easy for journalists to find and use their news content
  3. 88% want images with news releases
  4. 35% want video
  5. Provide embed codes and single URLS for those assets so a journalist or blogger can easily and quickly use your material
  6. Include links to relevant information – background data, analyst info, bios of those quoted etc.

Take a hard look at your online newsroom.  Are you servicing the digital journalists?

 

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12th May 2011

Want More Media Coverage? Embrace Digital PR.

The PwR survey polls 200 journalists from newspapers, magazines and the Internet each year.

The 2011 study key findings show that journalists are embracing the online world:

  • 77% contribute content to a website or a blog in addition to their usual duties
  • 87% prefer to receive press releases via email
  • 91% want “easy access” via a link in the email to relevant background, bios and supporting information
  • 87% want access to high res images
  • 76% want verbiage they can cut and paste easily
  • 79% are more likely to pick up a story with an image

For the first time journalists are asking for digital assets with embed codes:

  • 44% want access to low res images
  • 32% want embed codes so they can easily grab and reuse the images on websites or blogs
  • 22%  want an image player they can transfer to their site with a few clicks

The use of video is also gaining ground:

  • 85% of online media sites are using video with their news stories
  • 30% of journalists are now looking for web quality video
  • 23% say that embed codes for easy transfer of your video to other sites and blogs are very important

Journalists are relying on the digital world for information:

  • 96% start with a search
  • 84% like electronic media kits emailed to them
  • 87% use online newsrooms
  • 85% tap social media (Facebook, Twitter)
  • 82% read blogs
  • 32% get information via RSS feeds

Re-examine your Media Relations Strategy:

There are 30% fewer journalists and the way they are expected to do their job is rapidly changing. If you want to get coverage for your news stories, you have to change too.

  1. Create a rich news environment on your website where journalists can find all the data they need
  2. Post your news in the social media release format. (It’s like an electronic media kit)
  3. Add images and videos
  4. Add slide decks and graphics with players that can easily be transferred to a website or blog
  5. Provide embed codes for all visual material
  6. Include bios and relevant background/supporting  material
  7. Add media contacts
  8. Send an email to the journalist with  links to this content
  9. Make it possible to subscribe to your news in a feed or by email
  10. Make it easy for any visitor to share the news content

When you give journalists the news in the format they prefer it pays dividends.

“We are delighted with the results of our move to a social media newsroom.  We’ve gained media coverage that has not only transferred into positive exposure for our destination, but has helped increase visitation to our industry partners as well.” Casey Hough, Marketing and Media Manager VisitWinstonSalem.com

Ask us for a demo - it’s done online and takes just 20 minutes

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Image Credit: Lisa Padilla Flickr

 

 

 

 

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2nd May 2011

Online Video Use on Media Sites Jumps to 85%

As broadband capacity increases so does the demand for visual material and video.  And while funny videos of cats and babies might seem to be top of the list, the use of video content to cover news stories by online media websites has jumped by a third in the last year to 85 percent.  They are increasing the use of in-house and externally developed video content to support their online reporting – source: 2011 Web Influencers Survey (www.dssimon.com)

“It appears that almost all forms of media have transformed themselves into online television networks,” said Douglas Simon, president and CEO of D S Simon.

This trend looks set to continue since web media companies say they plan to increase their use of video footage:  Nearly four-fifths of respondents indicated they would use more or much more video in 2011 than they did in 2010.

Other key findings of this survey:

  • Nearly half (47 percent) of media websites now offer a mix of advertorial, product placement and paid content: The survey found that in addition to paid advertising, media site-owners are looking toward brand integration opportunities to raise additional revenues. Magazine sites were most aggressive in this area (68 percent), followed by radio (50 percent), web producers (47 percent), newspapers (45 percent), bloggers (40 percent) and TV (31 percent).
  • Earned media on a website generates more value than just the initial placement: Video content placed by companies and public relations agencies on a website has an increasing chance of being syndicated to other websites. The likelihood of content being shared last year was 43 percent; in 2010; 41 percent of responds indicated they were likely to share video content; and in 2009, just 35 percent indicated they were likely to do so. Newspapers, at 63 percent, were the most likely media website to share content with other sites.

“Searching online for news changed the news  industry in the last decade. Sharing the news will be what influences it most in this decade.“   Pew Research

A video blog summarizing some of the key findings of the survey is available at http://www.vlogviews.com/2011webinfluencerssurvey/.

Related research:

  • Forrester Research reports that video increases a web page’s likelihood for a front-page Google search result by 96 percent
  • ComScore found that product videos increase the likelihood of purchase by 64 percent
  • Internet Retailer discovered that videos increase time spent on a website by an average of 9 percent.

PR Takeaway:

Make all your news releases social media releases – add online video to all your news content. Remember those video news releases we used to make? Sharpen up those skills and learn how to translate it to the online digital world. Offer complete, short, interesting videos and B-roll with each news release.

Media sites prefer completed videos to other video content:

  1. Fully produced videos (57 percent)
  2. B-roll footage (49 percent)
  3. Sound bites last (47 percent
  4. TV sites almost universally prefer b-roll footage (98 percent) but newspapers  much preferred completed videos (71 percent).

Upgrade your online newsroom to a social media newsroom with a video gallery that has offers reporters and bloggers  the embed code for your video assets. That way  they can easily republish your content.

 

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25th April 2011

Integrate Social Media Into Your Newsroom

Many companies are considering integrating more social media features into their corporate website this year – the  online newsroom is a logical place to add social features.

This is the process Cisco adopted.  Via Dado van Peterghem on Slideshare

Here are some examples

BASF has a new online information service for journalists, bloggers and brand fans. Social Media Newsroom bundles all Web 2.0 information about the company on an easy-to-navigate central platform

VanderBilt University built their newsroom in WordPress.

Intel took the in-house custom built approach

Opel has a social media hub

Scania was one of the first to create a social newsroom

Building a social media newsroom in-house takes time, commitment and qualified resources who understand the features needed and how to build them.

If you’d like to upgrade your newsroom ask for a demo of the PRESSfeed social media newsroom.  We can have you up and running in just 14 days.

 

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12th April 2011

Online Video Sharing Doubles in Less Than a Year

Online video sharing has doubled in the last nine months, says Unruly Media, a firm that tracks video viewing and sharing behavior online.

And according to their report 40% of all YouTube views happen on Facebook.

 

 

Forbes and Google’s “Video in the C-Suite” report shows that video is becoming a critical information source for C-suite executives and can drive them to action.

  • More than 80% said they are watching more online video today than they were a year ago.
  • More than 75% of C-Suite Executives watch work-related corporate video online on a business-related website at least weekly.
  • 65% of C-suite Executives report visiting a vendor’s website after watching their online video
  • The social element of online video is also strong in the executive suite: More than half of senior executives share videos with colleagues at least weekly, and receive work-related videos as often.

What kind of videos should companies and organizations be considering to cash in on this online video bonanza?

Chris Lake has some great suggestions in a blog post at Econsultancy

These are my favorites:

  1. Branded videos – creates awareness and builds interest
  2. Product videos – a great way to build trust
  3. User videos – get your customers to tell your story
  4. Sponsored videos – tapping into talent and great content
  5. Clickable/hotspot videos – increases conversions

Online videos give companies the chance to get really creative and connect with their audience in a new way.

How can PR tap into this trend?

Story telling and video have been an integral part of PR for many years. Now that the barriers to video production are fast disappearing,  make this skill a priority in 2011.

  • Take a class on digital video production
  • Learn to use your smart phone to make and upload a video right to the web (Note:  The Flip video is going away)
  • Get basic editing skills so you can clean up the video and add intro and outro screens
  • Learn how to optimize your videos for search
  • Find a creative online video specialist that can assist you with projects that are beyond your capabilities

Online video is an opportunity the PR industry should seize with both hands.

Creating a Video Gallery in Your Newsroom

Having videos that appeal to your audiences on site in the social web is a great strategy, but you also have to house them in a central hub of content -and what better place than your newsroom?  Create a video gallery that showcases all your videos and make it easy for journalists, bloggers and interested visitors to your website to find and share your content.

Offer them all the possible sharing options you can.  And make very sure you have a way for them to share your videos on Facebook!


 

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Image credit:  Flickr – Lars K. Jensen

 

 

 

 

 

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