9 steps to an effective online corporate newsroom

9 steps to an effective online corporate newsroomHave you considered how technology today provides mechanisms for business to communicate directly with constituents? We’ve witnessed a shift from mass communication and broad advertising to targeted communication with specific key audiences.

Since I’ve worked in public relations since the mid-90s and I enjoy new technology as much as the next guy, it has been natural, even exciting, for me to concentrate on the various aspects of business communication through social media.

I’m surprised that more companies haven’t taken advantage of at least one aspect of this digital communication revolution — the ability to tell their own story using an effective online newsroom.

Companies aren’t really tied to traditional media any longer. They have nearly as many tools as broadcasters and publishers do, and they’re affordable.

A social media equipped newsroom should be considered ground zero for publishing news and information about your organization on the Web. Of all the information shared about you online, your own press room should lead the way in delivering timely, factual updates with supporting resources.

Here are the 9 things an effective online newsroom should do for your business:

1. Clearly identify media spokespeople and provide mechanisms through which they can be contacted right away. Help the journalist reach a real person quickly.

2. Provide an online searchable archive of all news and information about your company. If you use Google’s custom site search, you’ll do yourself a favor by making your content that more familiar to Google search.

3. Maximize your online search placement. A newsroom as a subdomain or standalone website will help you maximize the number of search results for your primary keywords.

4. Allow site visitors to subscribe to receive your updates in a way most preferred by them — email, RSS Reader, text message, etc.

5. Introduce the public to your key executives through engaging biographies, photos and links to their online work, like a blog, video channel or social networking profile.

6. Display beautiful press kits in HTML and PDF versions — your own digital brochures, so to speak.

7. Tell your own story using multimedia — documents, images, logos, video and audio files. You could use your resources to host an Internet-based news broadcast on your company or the industry in which you work.

8. Make your news content snackable and sharable — bite-sized content pieces that visitors can pass along to their friends. When they share, you benefit from distributed content, increased awareness and a greater presence online and in the real world.

9. Establish your company as the best source of news and information both for you and the industry. Become the benchmark example for excellence in timely, accurate and helpful news and information.

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