Staying in the spotlight

spotlight

Your business has good news to share — maybe you won an award or added new employees. Ten years ago, sending out a standard news release was all you needed to do to get it published in the local newspaper. But as newspapers have slimmed down — or disappeared altogether — that’s no longer a given. And if a publication picks up your news, they may run just a paragraph or two. Today’s multiple media platforms, however, can help you keep the good news front and center and share more of your message beyond a couple of paragraphs.

How can you keep your news in the spotlight? It’s not difficult if you repurpose your content, which means using the same information in multiple ways. When I worked at a newspaper, we did this frequently, taking an article from the daily regional section and then using it in a weekly, more localized publication. While the two publications had some crossover in readership, for the most part, they were separate audiences — much like how LinkedIn and Instagram cater to different audiences.

After sending out a news release to your organization’s media list (include associations you belong to as well since they may share it in a newsletter or social media post), you can keep your organization’s news in the spotlight. Here’s a few ideas to get you started:

Post the news on your website. Most websites have either a blog or a news section. (If you don’t, we should talk.) Take advantage of those by posting the entire news release online. This not only gives your full release a permanent home, it also creates a link you can send via email to customers, employees or anyone else interested in news updates about your business.

Utilize social media. When adding a news release to your website, consider making it a social media press release. In a social media post, in addition to posting the actual news release, you include videos, photos or anything else that helps further explain the story. Once the release is living on your site, use that link in social media posts to drive followers and influencers to your website so they can read the entire news release. Remember, each social media channel has its own unique audience so tailor your message appropriately. If it’s not urgent, you can create posts to go live at different times over a couple of days on different platforms to keep the news fresh.

Utilize social media, part two. Once a news source announces your news — for example your organization’s new hires — share that article link on your own social media platforms. Create a post saying, “We’re excited to see the news in XXX about our new hires” and use the link to that publication. This again puts your news out in front of customers, employees, potential customers and other followers.

Engage employees. Encourage (but not force) your workers to like or follow your organization’s LinkedIn and/or Facebook pages. Ask them to share, like or comment on your organization’s posts — this increases the number of people who will see your post. For example, if I like or comment on a LinkedIn post from O’Connor Connective, my followers on the platform will see my activity, sharing the original message to more people. Sharing an organization’s post attracts even more impressions. If your organization is large, ask senior leaders and managers to share your message.

With today’s changing media landscape, it’s more important than ever for businesses to share their stories through their websites and social media.

MaryBeth Matzek is the communications manager at O’Connor Connective in De Pere.

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