On Super Tuesday, President Barack Obama decided to hold a press conference and answer journalists’ questions at the same time that 10 different states were holding Republican presidential primaries. The Onion has written a short paragraph titled This Article Generating Thousands Of Dollars In Ad Revenue Simply By Mentioning New iPad during the recent Apple conference where iPad 3 was launched. London Fire Brigade published an article offering fire brigade training from Kate Winslet after she rescued Sir Richard Branson’s mother from the fire at his estate on Necker Island. All three generated a huge amount of buzz and media coverage and appeared on top of Google ranking on day itself and long after.
Newsjacking – redirecting the attention and buzz from breaking news to your own or your company’s advantage – is a topic of a new book by David Meerman Scott called, “Newsjacking: How to Inject Your Ideas into a Breaking News Story and Generate Tons of Media Coverage,” whose session I attended today. The author doesn’t only talk the talk, he walks the walk. His eBook was launched on the day Kindle Fire was launched and was at that day the only Kindle Fire optimized book. Guess who saved thousands of dollars on the PR?
Newsjacking is powerful and it works, but only if executed in real-time. And that’s where the problem for many companies starts. Used to long term planning, data analysis, campaign execution, step by step – they need to unlearn everything they’ve learned about generating attention. Speed and agility are key - so big companies’ obsession with the approval processes will be their undoing. Organizations must change and that’s not easy. Change never is. But there is hope. It will require education at the C-level, creation of guidelines, putting someone in charge of TODAY because there are enough people in charge of TOMORROW.
Take the opportunity of NOW. React to breaking news quickly, feature the keyword of the moment in an article, tweet or blog post and start stealing media attention like a pro!