After a couple of weeks filled with amazing news headlines — from letters filled with ricin sent to a senator and the U.S. president, to bombings at the 2013 Boston Marathon, to deadly explosions at a fertilizer plant in West, Texas — newsjacking might seem like a no-brainer for your marketing department. But take care to know what’s really involved and establish some basic guidelines for your organization to follow.
Exactly what is newsjacking? According to David Meerman Scott, author of the latest e-book on the subject — Newsjacking: How to Inject Your Ideas into a Breaking News Story and Generate Tons of Media Coverage — it’s the opportunity to instantly put your organization into the news of the day and keep it there over time. It’s a social media post or news media promotion that points to relevant content in your online media room or blog.
When you newsjack, you provide your expert, quotable insights on the news topic — insights that help position your organization as the go-to source for more information. You want to quickly deliver well-written, verifiable, and valuable information that journalists can quote verbatim — as if they’d talked to you in person. It should flesh out the “why” behind the “who, what, when, where” and help keep the story alive. Your take becomes the second paragraph in the story they’re telling.
Examples range from Kate Middleton’s morning sickness episodes to Oreo tweeting “You can still dunk in the dark” during the Super Bowl lighting snafu to reminders about the warning signs of stroke that appeared after the death of Britain’s Margaret Thatcher. Almost any topic offers an opening for newsjacking. To make the most of it, you need website content that is helpful, welcoming, user-focused, and action-oriented — content that describes how your services benefit your patients and how it fits a news topic. Posting your ‘take’ on the story to your blog also helps search engines find you.
Geonetric client Adventist HealthCare tapped into an online conversation with this successful newsjack:
Want to begin newsjacking? Geonetric can help you get started!