The media landscape is evolving. There’s no doubt about that. And yet when it comes to media relations, our clients are often reluctant to adapt. Why? Because new online outlets and social media outposts have unclear editorial policies, unavailable circulation numbers and undefined readership profiles.
But does this mean we should avoid targeting new media outlets, or advise our clients to decline a guest blog post opportunity because we can’t identify the percentage of readers in the c-suite?
Absolutely not. And here are sevenbusiness reasons why:
- Search. You’re guaranteed at least one reader online: your friendly internet search engine. And search engines give preference to websites with fresh, relevant content – a likely characteristic of the online media site or blog you’re targeting. If you want your expertise or point of view on a topic to be searchable, online outlets are an important channel.
- Content. Articles or blog posts that appear online should not be viewed as standalone pieces. There are a number of ways that (with permission) you can leverage these placements through other marketing channels, including a company website, blog, Twitter handle, newsletters, presentations and handouts, to name a few.
- PR. According to a recent study by Brunswick Research, more than two-thirds of journalists have written a story that originated via social media. Being included in online stories, or being active in social networks, can help you become a ready-made source for journalists from traditional outlets covering topics that are important to you.
- Issue Ownership. This is a highly sought after marketing objective that requires you to dedicate significant resources to advancing your particular issue, field or topic. Writing, blogging and commenting about your “issue” online provides another channel for “getting the word out.”
- Targeted Marketing. If you’ve done your homework, you may not know the exact number of readers/viewers of a particular social outpost, but you do know the key online influencers, or prospects you’re targeting, and where they’re interacting online. This intelligence can be used to target important niche groups.
- Marketing Differentiation. Differentiation is the key to effective marketing. Finding new, targeted outlets that aren’t overcrowded with your competitors can provide an opportunity for you to stand out.
- Lead generation. Don’t underestimate the power of search. Recent research by Greenfield Belser found that 83% of executive-level buyers (in this case of legal, accounting or consulting services in the US) report the internet has replaced other methods of researching and 76% say it has replaced other methods of receiving news. This isn’t your father’s internet: B2B buyers are online.
So, the next time you’re debating whether or not a non-traditional media opportunity is worth your time, pull out this list. Hopefully it will serve as a reminder of why you should at least think twice before turning it down.
Do you agree, or are there other benefits you’d add to this list?
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