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The first scenario ... OMG. That's f'ed up.
Second scenario ... I don't think that you handled it wrong because you told everyone that you all dug in and you stood by your team. I've been at agencies where the client, the customers, etc. were believed over the team and we, as the team, definitely felt the lack of trust.
You have to stand by your team. You also have to protect your brand. You've worked hard for it and you can't let it deteriorate even if it means hurting feelings and addressing hard issues in the process.
Live strong, Gini. ;-)
18 hours, 35 minutes ago on When a Leader Learns of Unethical Behavior
@SarahSkerik Thank you for your thoughtful reply! To your main point, I agree that we need to continually work toward understanding the value of the content we share and the mediums with which we share that content.
However, we may just have to agree to disagree in that all of these points do not convince me that newswire services are the most efficient use of my clients news releases. Especially when organic PR generates so much more bang for the proverbial PR buck.
Dark traffic and a lot of the information you shared is valuable and exists regardless of where content is shared (newswire, a blog post, etc.) ... Overall, this is a great discussion on being more strategic and thoughtful in how and why we are sharing content.
It's encouraging to me that newswire services such as yours are delving deep to confirm / re-establish their value despite Google changes.
1 week, 2 days ago on Why Newswire Services Don’t Work (and When They Do)
@DwayneAlicie My Thanksgiving was marvelous, thank you! It's a constant temptation for me to start my day in email or even on social. It's so easy to get distracting and caught up ... before you know it, you've wasted an hour that could have been much more productive. Sigh.
1 week, 2 days ago on 5 Tips to Get Back to Work After a Holiday (Minus the Freak Out!)
@SarahSkerik Alright :) I've had a chance to review. First, as the author of this post, my experiences are based on data across dozens of clients and eight years of experience with news release distribution organically and via wire services.
Second, I have to say I kind of love your idea about sharing a timely blog post via a wire service. I'm thinking through how that could work so thanks for the idea.
A couple comments ... (more like a wish list and food for thought)
1. I'd love to see an unbiased study on how journalists actually use wire services. I think this would uncover valuable information when and how these services are used and allow us to use them better -- when and if we use them.
2. Would you consider your services PR or advertising?
3. I like your point about newswire distribution as being bigger than just the media ... I saw your use of Twitter as an example. I'd love to see how much pickup a news release gets outside of traditional media and how this drives click thrus.
4. My biggest concern and follow up to your study is that of those 1000 how much of the traffic is credited to actual news sites like WSJ.com vs. PRnewswire.com ... the reason why this is setting off a red flag for me is that, in my experience and data from web traffic, when coverage is secured organically on leading sites like WSJ.com, CNNMoney.com, Today.com, etc. the traffic is exponential to that demonstrated in your survey. Shouldn't the numbers be more comparable when a wire release is shared on the same news site? Why the dramatic variance in traffic?
Since I have web traffic and a case study handy, I'll use myself as an example:
I secured this article after reaching out to a reporter at CNN Money: http://money.cnn.com/gallery/smallbusiness/2013/05/13/new-business/3.html
(I wrote about this early in the year along with another case study http://spinsucks.com/communication/traditional-media-relations-and-real-measurable-results/ )
On the first day it ran, it generated more than 900 click thurs.
Overall, this is proving educational as to what newswire services provide and how you are diversifying your offerings and measurement efforts.
Thank you for joining in on the debate!
1 week, 3 days ago on Why Newswire Services Don’t Work (and When They Do)
@Frank_Strong Thanks for joining in on the debate with me :)
I LOVE your ROI case study. That is the sort of thing that should be at the front of newswire websites: case studies, success stories -- yes!
I do agree that news releases are a tool within the toolkit too. I use them regularly but rarely on the wire.
I'd agree to disagree with you anytime! Thanks for letting me stir the pot.
@Bernadette Lee Thanks so much for your comment! From your last sentence, it sounds like using a wire service can be beneficial in reaching a larger audience when you don't have the budget for a PR agency? I think this is an interesting point that hasn't been brought up yet. Thank you.
Although, I would recommend that if budget is a restriction in organic PR outreach, instead of investing money within a wire service, perhaps having a knowledgeable, engaging team member reach out to journalists organically on a local level would be best? I've found that reporters respond quite well to sincere, organic outreach from a CEO of a company -- even on a national level if the timing is right! As long as it's not a sales pitch that is :)
@SavvyCopywriter Your point about realistic expectations is key and those expectations should be setup on the front end, before the release draft.
@Randy Milanovic In my experience, "lottery" is pretty accurate. :)
@ElissaFreeman Thanks for jumping in and commenting! I love hearing the different experiences and perspectives.
I agree with you that the news release can still be quite useful, I'm just questioning the actual value of newswire distribution services.
When you say reporters ask for the release to be put on the wire ... how often does this sort of thing happen? And, in that scenario, are you reaching out to media organically and they are, in turn, letting you know they will only share the release if it's auto-populated to their news site through the wire?
That's been my experience in the case of business journals at times. In those cases, I just go to a different outlet or go around that journalist.
@JoeSloanSays Right, and that pudding won't taste very good. Glad to have you here, Joe!
@Word Ninja Have to keep those ninja skills harp ;-)
@SarahSkerik I love this! I'm so glad you chimed in and even replied via a rebuttal post! THIS is what I want to see. Show me WHY I should use your services. What is the real value? I'm reading / digging in now and will reply with comments / follow up in a minute ...
@cmor21 Spray and pray -- HA! I love it.
@Tinu One of the areas that things are getting a little confused ... I'm A-OK with news releases. They still hold value when used correctly (as you so wonderfully stated) ... it's newswires that leave me wanting more.
@martinwaxman OH I just meant if *I* write them they are masterpieces ... Ha!! :)
2 weeks, 1 day ago on Why Newswire Services Don’t Work (and When They Do)
@martinwaxman Twins! :) I do enjoy a well written release though. I feel like they can be a masterpiece ...
Man, you're right, it really does sound like we had a discussion over coffee before writing our respective posts today! :)
I really, really want to hear journalists weigh in on their actual use of news releases and wire services. I do find that regional media make more use of releases than national media.
OH and I totally get the website thing. I released in January and I'm still tweaking too.
2 weeks, 1 day ago on Six Digital Media and PR Lessons From 2013
@Frank_Strong Me again :)
(Thank you for indulging me) Yes, really! Just last week I had a client point out a competitors release that was put on the wire with "facts" that were skewed and not accurate. It was that company's official stance and there were no grammatical errors, however, the information they presented as "fact" was, in fact, bias. If that same (inaccurate) information had been shared with a reporter, that reporter would have checked the facts and not shared the release or come back questioning the source's credibility.
Regarding impressions ... I like your comparison to GA and that's a whole new can of worms because if eyeballs are viewing the content but they aren't the RIGHT eyeballs, it doesn't move the needle. We move back to the ambiguous "media impressions" measurement.
We can tell clients 30,000 people saw their release on the wire or a particular outlet but ... at the end of the day, what did that really accomplish?
@Frank_Strong Thanks for weighing in and bringing up points of debate. A couple things:
1) I don't agree that a news release on the wire is necessarily credible -- it's really just advertising, isn't it? It's paid for by the company and not backed by a reporter.
2) I'm not bashing news releases. I, personally, adore a well written release and think they still hold lots of value. They also are still a preferred tool with journalists.
3) I'd love to hear more about the example you're referencing ... 6,000 impressions reported by the wire service or click thrus from the wire release to a website? Not sure what you mean here.
Excellent points, Frank!
@JRHalloran Hi :) What do you mean by "filler for content"? What's an example you're thinking of? Thank you, sir!