Online media centers, press centers, or newsrooms are webpages on a company website that attracts journalists because it holds all of the company’s media coverage. It is the job of a PR specialist to make a journalist’s job easier by making it easier, more efficient, easier to share, and quicker to find key information to create a story (Luttrell 185). New releases on social media receive three times the coverage that traditional news releases receive (Luttrell 197). Content is king – don’t use flashy images. Include content such as executive bios, social media generated press releases, white papers, essential photographs, and company logos. Make sure the online media center can be found using web searches and has the ability to subscribe and receive emails (RSS feeds). Also make sure to feature the online media center on the company homepage with easy URL links (Luttrell 186). Press releases must be shareable (Luttrell 197).
1. Press Releases –
- Contact Info – Only list where you intend to respond (email, office/mobile phone numbers, social media platforms) *always list on top
- Headline –Grab attention! Should be 60 to 120 characters and be bold, capitalizing every word except prepositions and words 3 letters or less.
- Intro Paragraph – Inverted pyramid of who, what, when, why, and where, 1 to 4 sentences, and title case
- Supporting Paragraph/Details – tells the story; should avoid advertising or marketing speech, 300 to 800 words, and title case
- Anchor Text Links – “keyword-rich phrases linked to a relevant page on the Internet.” Ex: facts and stats, multimedia (mobile friendly audio, video, infographics, social bookmarking, sharing tools, social commenting, and creative commons license)
2. Company background/statements – History of the company including milestones, how it started, mission, visions, and goals.
3. Leadership team – Short biographies of company owners, founders, and top leadership team: includes picture of individual, names, and professional title.
4. Multimedia – Photographs of events, products, logos, personnel, videos, reports, presentations, b-roll, and infographics.
5. Products – List products or services with a brief description and significance.
6. FAQs/fact sheets – List of FAQs from media representatives.
7. Speakers or interview topics – Topics that company spokespeople can speak about that incorporates members from different departments and areas of expertise (Luttrell 187-196).
Organizing your online media center –
Use tools such as Google Trends, Bing’s Xrank, and Trellian’s keyworddiscovery.com to determine keywords to optimize SEO (prnewswire.com).
*Remember, a good online media center can rescue a good story, but a bad online media center can kill a story!
*Newsrooms are always GREAT for a PR crisis! You can add updates to the news site in real time to keep your audience informed (prnewswire.com).
An example of an online media center is the following for Google:
How would you change this online media center?
I think that the links are all great and easy to find things. There are some great photographs and links to their webcasts. What I would change is the home page. I would make the tabs at the bottom (company, news, careers, investor relations, and contact us) more visible and more accessible at the top of the page in tabs or on the left hand side in tabs, so people do not have to scroll all the way to the bottom. The bottom is not where everyone would check.
1. What might online media centers be good for in a company?
2. How would you use the online media centers during a PR crisis?
3. What would be the most important thing a journalist would look for on a company’s online media center?
Elena. “How to Create a Good Online Media Center.” PR In Your Pajamas. N.p., n.d. Web. <http://prinyourpajamas.com/online-media-center/>.
Luttrell, Regina. “Chapter 11: Online Media Centers in a Connected World.” Social Media: How to Engage, Share, and Connect. N.p.: Rowman & Littlefield, 2014. N. pag. Print.
“Online Newsroom Best Practices.” PR Newswire: Press Release Distribution, Targeting, Monitoring and Marketing. N.p., n.d. Web. <http://www.prnewswire.com/knowledge-center/Online-Newsroom-Best-Practices.html>.