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Saturday, August 13, 2011

Add multimedida to news releases easily and affordably




Recent analysis from PR Newswire confirms what they have suspected for a while - press releases that include multimedia elements generate 77-percent more views than releases that contain only text.

PR Newswire offers reasons why their multimedia releases receive more views, but regardless of the platform, news releases that contains photo and video assets reach more people by the vary nature of the assets it contains.

Every asset is a piece of sharable content in and of itself.

A product demonstration video embedded into a release from YouTube;

A slideshow of event photos from a Flickr library;

An audio clip of a radio interview from iTunes;

Not only are these working double-time from a search perspective, but each asset also has a second “home” on the social web where it can be shared or favorited on other networks – increasing the shelf life of your message and the likelihood that they will be viewed.

Additionally, the multimedia release itself contains social sharing features, and readers are more likely to actively share multimedia content than text-only content.

You may have ditched the .pdf attachments a while ago, but are you using multimedia to ensure all of your news releases are working to their fullest potential?

A multimedia release does not have to be expensive or labor intensive to produce. A few years ago, our firm recognized that if we could package all of the material that an editor, reporter or blogger could possibly need in one place, we'd be making their job easier, and in turn, make it more likely that they'd act upon the information.

At that time, we put our proverbial eggs in a little basket called Pitch Engine and we haven’t looked back. We’ve been recommending and building their social media releases and newsrooms for our clients ever since.

If your release doesn’t require wire distribution, solutions like Pitch Engine offer the features of a multimedia release at a fraction of the price (and then you can do your own, customized distribution to the key contacts on your media list).

But...multimedia assets cost a lot of money to produce, right?

Not true. It’s not necessary to budget for high-end production of multimedia assets for your social media release or newsroom. In fact, many anecdotal reports indicate that video footage taken from an inexpensive digital camera is more likely to be viewed and acted upon than professionally produced videos.

Any of the following are suitable content to augment your release, and can be produced on a limited budget if you don’t already have them in your arsenal:

  • Images of company logo(s) and avatar
  • Headshots of company leadership
  • Video or audio clips of news interviews
  • Photos or video of company events
  • Facility tours
  • Customer-submitted video testimonials
  • Video or images produced by industry associations*

Remember – the more assets you have to support the content of your news release, the more likely it is to be viewed and shared. The news release is no longer two-dimensional. It’s a robust container of content that, when presented to your audience, will be opened, disbursed and repurposed.

*That’s right…the nature of the social web is that things are shared. If your industry association or someone else has produced a great video that helps to tell your story, consider using it, but remember to give credit where credit is due.

Kary Delaria is a digital PR strategist and social media monitoring and measurement specialist for Kane Consulting, a mInneapolis-based social media firm that specializes in cross-channel integration. You can find her on Twitter, @KaryD or reach her via email, kary@kaneconsulting.biz