What separates the most successful brands’ communications apart from the rest? Technology.
Technology is becoming increasingly more important when it comes to effective comms and a brand newsroom eliminates the need for multiple tools, enabling communicators to create content, publish across multiple channels (including social media), monitor and analyse – all from one platform.
UK Marketing Manager extraordinaire, Kate Parker, uses the newsroom on a daily basis and shares her best tips for getting the most out of your brand newsroom…
1. Knowledge & understanding of your target group
When you know who your target audience is you’ll be able to craft your content accordingly. And if you’re hitting your desired audience with the content they’re craving, they’ll be more likely to share it across their channels – and that means a greater reach!
A great way to figure out who your audience is is to create a “persona”. Start by thinking about their job, their challenges, needs, age, career level – hey, you can even give them a name! This work is fundamental, and can form the basis of your entire comms strategy.
“At Mynewsdesk, we do this work once a year and then use these personas to test out different communication ideas. We also continuously use our Analyze tool to see who opens our email and newsletters, to better understand our target group”, says Kate.
2. Use video and pictures to enhance your message
The average Facebook video generates 135% greater organic reach compared to photo posts. People are busy, they’re strapped for time, so if you can communicate your message in a snappy, digestible format it’s more likely to be listened to and used. With this in mind – press releases with links to videos and embedded pictures are a must because it increases overall engagement by 18% with photos and 55%!
It’s easier to take in a text when you have a video to amplify the message. I try to create content where both videos and pictures are integrated. It elevates the content and makes it easier to connect with. And it’s a killer combination for SEO!
3. Let others speak for you
One of the biggest challenges for many organisations is a lack of resources. But there are many ways to get around the problem. One of the biggest trends within marketing this year is influencer marketing.
“Where possible, work together with specialised influencers. They could be an expert in a certain area, a client, or a lecturer – anybody who has a close relationship with your brand and has the credibility and the possibility to reach your target group. The effect is always bigger when you let others speak for you. For us, it’s important to highlight the role Mynewsdesk can play in crisis communication for our customers. This is why we’ve been having a close collaboration with Polpeo, a crisis simulation platform. Together we’ve been exploring crisis communication best practices, at FutureComms last year, the Digital PR Bootcamp, and collaborations on blog posts”
What else can you do? Look for knowledge within your own organisation too. Everyone has a different passion, area of expertise and story to tell – hand over the content reins once in a while.
4. Optimise for user friendliness
“We want to keep our newsroom updated with pictures, contacts and documents that are easy to find and use. My top tip when creating content – imagine Google as a person and what they’d want to find or read” says Kate.
Google, these days, is one smart cookie – so don’t try to outsmart it! Create QUALITY content that your readers want to read, don’t just create is for the sake of it. Don’t ram it with links and keywords – it’ll look spammy. Your content should always address your readers’ needs and enhance their experience of your site.
For images, Google needs a little help knowing what it is so add a descriptive alt tag. For videos, write a transcript. These are really effective methods to make your content even easier to find.
5. Be ready to react
When done in the right way, an angled news piece can be an effective way to use trending events from social media to react to or create a parody around.
In August 2016, the Pokemon Go craze reached feverish heights and our blog post about The Digital Rebirth Of Pokémon & What It’s Taught Marketers drew massive attention.
“It’s really good to be structured and plan ahead, with a content calendar (you can download our content calendar here!). But be ready to react too! Capitalising on trending topics is a great way to attract the traffic!”, says our UK Marketing Manager Kate.
6. Be careful with the headline
Did you know that the site Upworthy creates 25 different headlines for each news piece? A clear and powerful headline can sell the text in an effective way. A recent study showed that in 88% of the cases, a clear headline converted more leads than a creative one. So think of a few and test, test, test!
7. Measure, analyse, adjust and learn
When you know what your goals are it’ll be easy to work towards those and measure your success along the way. Use insights to plan your future content and amend your future content accordingly.
“To really see where our traffic comes from, we use the Analyze tool”, says Kate. “That way we can concentrate our efforts where they have the biggest impact. If you see that Facebook, for example, is where you have the most interactions, you can create your content to suit that channel the best”.
A good newsroom demands continuous updates. The work isn’t done when the newsroom has been installed, on the contrary, that’s when it begins!