Obscure Box

Thoughts from inside the obscure box


May 17, 2011

It takes a media release to tell me that the media release isn’t dead

Posted by : Michael Lund
BWH Communication

BWH Communication

I found this out in a media release from Brisbane firm BWH Communication, called ''Is the media release dead in a new age of social media?'' (Friday 29 April 2011).

It offers an interesting insight in to the way the PR industry views the media. So why does BWH believe the media release isn't dead?

There are still thousands and thousands of print publications worldwide and journalists that rely on receiving solid information from credible sources relevant to their specific readership.

It goes on to explain the way the public relations industry targets different sectors of the media.

In the past, if you wanted print, television and radio coverage, you had to prepare your story in at least two ways: a longer detailed version for print and a short version, concisely capturing only the key points for radio and television reflecting their need for just the headlines.

Pity the poor broadcast mob for only getting the key points. Still, they can always rely on the clippings from that day's newspaper to provide the details.

Why is BWH talking so openly about the media release? Because it's noting the way social media has become a platform for PR delivery. Here too though the firm notes a difference between the traditional media release and the social media audience.

A traditional media release focuses on "selling", while social media users are more interested in "value to them". They are looking for something that is interesting, outwardly focused and not filled with hyperbole and marketing speak. Instead, information provided through social media channels needs to be sharing, caring, straight to the point and optimised to reach your target audiences.

Funny that. I always thought it was my job as a journalist to be "sharing, caring, straight to the point and optimised to reach your target audiences". I want to share my stories, I want to do stories that are caring about issues, I want to get straight to the point and want to reach as wide an audience as possible.

I too am not interested in "hyperbole and marketing speak" which you find all too often in a media release.

There are some good PR operatives who take the time to understand the media they deal with and understand what would make a good story for their audience.

I'll admit I found this media release from BWH because they'd pitched me a good yarn and I was just checking out the firm to see what it was like.

There are some bad PR operatives too. Those are the ones who should stop trying to "sell" me something every time they send a media release, pick up the phone or send another mass e-mail beginning "Hi, how's your day been'' when they have no interest.


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All thoughts and comments here are the honestly held personal opinion of Michael Lund and are based on the information available at the time of publication.

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