Most businesses and organizations that have a website have some form of online newsroom, even if it is just a section on their site where they add news items and releases.
Now that we’re operating in the social web, with everyone able to post their views and ideas and people sharing news they find online, we have to improve the news sections of our websites and make our content more social.
Here are 10 ideas on how to achieve social media integration in your newsroom.
Add Visual Elements to your News Releases
Now that the majority of US internet users are on broadband you can include visual elements with your story. People today are very visual – they appreciate images and infographics that help them understand the data. Post your images to Flickr and then create an image gallery on your newsroom. Use these simple tools to help you create interesting infographics
Video has long been a staple of the PR story. Now that it is so easy and inexpensive to produce online video it should be one of your most important digital assets. Consider posting these videos in your own newsroom using a branded video player that offers an embed code and trackable links, so that you can see exactly where the content is being used. In addition, post it to YouTube, which is now the second largest search engine. While you might not think of it as a search engines, people who want to find video content about a subject search YouTube rather than Google.
Make The Content Easy to Find and Use
Journalists today are under immense pressure and they’re all being asked to support their stories with added visual elements that can go on the news outlet’s website. Take a look at the Wall Street Journal – at the end of most stories you see “More on wsj.com.” Journalists are looking for visual material they can use for stories and if you make it easy to find and use, you’re likely to get more coverage. Bloggers are also looking for material for blog posts - they want good graphics, images and video. And they want to be able to grab that content and use it right away.
Make it Easy to Share the Content
In a recent survey PRESSfeed conducted among PR professionals about social media features they’d most like to see in their newsroom in 2011 the ability to share the content in social sites like Facebook, Twitter, Digg and StumbleUpon was top of the list.
Create a Resource Center/Blog
With the easy self-publishing tools available today you can create a place to publish thought-leader articles and interesting industry resources for the journalists, bloggers and other interested people who come to your newsroom to find information.
Connect to all your Social Content
It's important to give your newsroom visitors a way to find and connect to your other social content. Put "Connect with Us" icons on your newsroom and make sure that these links open in a new window, so that when they are done theywill be returned to the newsroom.
Aggregate the Social Conversation in the Newsroom
Import your Twitter, blog post and comment feeds so that you have a snapshot of all the conversations about your brand right there in the newsroom. Add the Facebook Connect and LIke features so that when someone likes your content it will be added to their Facebook News feed and seen by their friends. They will also immediately see which of their friends likes the content they just tagged.
Add Tags to News Content
In his blog post Die Press Release, Die, Die, Die journalist and blogger Tom Foremski asked that PR people tag all content so that it can be better indexed by feed aggregators and search engines making it easier to find online. A good social media newsroom should allow you to tag news releases, images, graphics and video with keywords.
Add Facebook’s Social Plug-ins
You will need a little technical help to add these Facebook plug-ins, but it is well worth the effort. Each visitor who is logged in to Facebook when they visit your newsroom will see which of their friends have clicked the “Like” button, and a link to your site gets shared across their social graph.
Syndicating your news content into the social web is one of the most important features of a social media newsroom. Add an RSS feed to all content – images, video and text.
In part two of the series abput social media integration we'll look at some of the tools available to add social elements in your newsroom.
Socialize Your News Content
Creating news feeds (RSS feeds) is one of the best ways to get your content known and found beyond your website and filter your news into the social web. Find out how this method works and why it is so effective.
PRESSfeed is a turn-key social media online newsroom solution that gets you up to speed with the social media elements needed in a modern newsroom in under two weeks.