What is Newsjacking?
Basically, newsjacking means inserting your brand into the current news cycle to generate publicity. It is a tactic that PR professionals deploy to enter a product, brand or idea into realtime news conversations. To do it right takes skill, timing, story telling chops, quick action and a keen eye on trending news topics - plus a decent amount of industry intuition. In today's rapidly-paced news cycle, digital natives consume information at alarming speed and from many different sources and platforms, it takes a team to stay on top of relevant, newsjackable storylines. To learn more about this technique as well as other PR strategies to boost your company's clout, reach out to the DRIVEN360 team.
The History of Newsjacking
Let’s face it - the way modern companies and consumers are making decisions is very different than it used to be. In the digital age of PR and marketing, consumers and companies look to Google, social media and online resources to find the information needed to make decisions. As professionals in the PR and marketing industries, it is our job to recognize this digital shift and adapt effectively to succeed.
Newsjacking is one of the most effective and trending techniques utilized by market leaders today. David Meerman Scott, a master of this topic, has been educating others and writing about newsjacking since he coined the term in 2011. As explained by Scott, when news breaks, over time it develops into a bell-shaped curve as publicity builds and declines. Our job as newsjackers is to recognize a “newsjack-able” story and know the right time to intercept a topic. Through this tactic, your brand will become part of the larger news story.
It's All About Being in the Right Place, At the Right Time
Half of the battle of newsjacking is finding the right timing to intercept a news story. Key items to keep in mind when newsjacking include:
Inserting your brand name into the right news conversations.
Picking the right stories for your brand might be one of the most difficult challenges of newsjacking. The way you insert your brand story into the news should portray your brand in a positive light and aid in spreading the news about your brand’s existence. Newsjacking done well should reflect your brand’s personality and values.
Inserting your brand at the right time.
It’s all about timing! Catching a story before its publicity peaks is essential to newsjacking success. Keeping in mind the news bell-shaped curve, it is essential to newsjack a story just before it hits peak publicity.
Newsjacking in the right digital setting.
Google, Twitter, Facebook and other digital platforms will showcase and prioritize trending topics and stories. Keeping up with which digital platforms your audience accesses most frequently is key to newsjacking success.
Be among the first to recognize a successful story or trend.
Insert your brand into a trending story or conversation before your competitors do.
Take quick action when you find a worthy story to newsjack.
When you find a newsjacking-worthy story, you don’t have time to waste! Knowing the right time to newsjack a trend is half of the battle.
Insert your brand and its values into the trending story!
It is important to focus on the differentiation of your brand through newsjacking. Think to yourself, how does the story I am newsjacking positively represent and differentiate my brand?
How Does Newsjacking Impact PR?
How can you utilize newsjacking to meet your goals? Newsjacking is all about getting your client associated with the right news conversations at the right time. Monitoring the news can help professionals get clients involved with journalists in their industry and maintain involvement with current conversations happening in their field.
It is important to consistently monitor the news cycle. Knowing when to pitch, and when not to, is crucial to newsjacking success. As the news cycle moves quickly, it is important for practitioners using this tactic to recognize the right story at the right time for maximum client success. It is equally important to make sure you are pitching relevant, industry-related topics to journalists on behalf of clients. Mastering the newsjacking bell curve will help companies know when and what to pitch to journalists. Our PR team at DRIVEN360 recommends looking over industry news each day to ensure your team is keeping up with the latest stories. For more information on newsjacking from a PR standpoint, contact DRIVEN360 to speak with our group of PR professionals.
Newsjacking for Social Media - It Works Here Too!
Newsjacking is equally important in the world of social media. Success ultimately depends on the social media managers’ ability to recognize recent trends and newsjack current digital media conversations. Aligning your brand’s social media posts with current conversations on social media can significantly increase account engagement, following and reach. In other words, newsjacking techniques will help to showcase your account to new audiences.
Newsjacking requires a social media strategist to have a deep understanding of current digital media trends and current events. As stories reach a peak of popularity, SEO key term buzz will increase simultaneously.
Especially when it comes to newsjacking on social media, it is important to keep your viewers entertained through your content. As followers’ attention spans decrease by the minute, success on social media happens through entertaining your audience and posting save/share-worthy content. This concept directly relates to newsjacking because people save and share social media content that is trending and relevant. For more information on newsjacking on social media, check out Sprout Social’s article.
DRIVEN360 Newsjacking Successes
Social Media Examples
Everyone knows the new Miley Cyrus song, Flowers. Recognizing this trend, @gorvingwiththecaudills made their own video, utilizing the song to talk about RVing topics.
Holidays are the perfect opportunity for newsjacking! Mike Caudill shares @gorvingwiththecaudill's New Year's resolutions leading up to 2023
Public Relations Examples
DRIVEN360 client, OVHcloud US, has a variety of solutions that protect their customers from falling victim to ransomware attacks and losing their data for good. The DRIVEN360 team utilizes newsjacking to insert our client’s unique solutions into the news. With the rise of ransomware attacks hitting news stations, our team monitors the news for breaking ransomware stories where schools, hospitals and more have been attacked for their data.
As part of the pitch, DRIVEN360 is careful to break down their solutions in a simple manner so the average person will understand how OVHcloud US solutions can protect their businesses and prevent them from falling victim to ransomware payout.
Ready to Start Newsjacking?
Utilizing new techniques in PR and comms to help your business thrive. Having a relentless team that offers social media strategy, public relations work and marketing tactics on your side will help your brand take on the competition.