The changing face of media relations

Media relations has always been an essential component of the PR mix and PROs work hard to shape their clients’ news stories with compelling content and a sparkling headline to attract the attention of journalists. However, the media landscape has changed and although there will always be a need to perfect the story hook to reel the journalist in, it’s the delivery mechanism of our stories that’s evolving as journalists look for alternative ways to tell a story.

All our best known national media outlets no longer just publish a newspaper, their online presence has become just as, if not, more important than their print versions. Take The Daily Mail as an example, its online readership is global and by far outweighs its print readership and media outlets have recognised that more and more people are choosing to access content digitally.

It would seem that today’s digital citizens have little time to peruse newspapers and magazines and have their attention spans have shortened significantly. Social media is where we now turn to take in our news headlines. And, with such an overwhelming wealth of information available to us at our fingertips, it’s the stuff that we take in visually that now generates the best engagement figures with Facebook and Snapshot alone boasting video viewing figures of 18 billion per day.

What this means for us as a B2B PR agency, is that media relations becomes more than just a pitch and a press release; instead we need to develop a package of elements to make a story visually appealing so that a journalist or social media influencer can tell the story digitally. The written word will always have its place, but clearly to engage with today’s audiences, it’s time for PROs to look beyond the press release and create video, audio and infographics as an essential part of the communications mix.

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