How to Build the Ideal Online News Room

It’s a fact. Your customers and prospects are just as interested in your latest news, accomplishments and updates as your media contacts are. Not only is a News Room beneficial to your public relations, new business sales and customer retention efforts, but it is an outstanding search engine optimization tactic as well.

Best Practices in News Room Development

The most useful, credibility-building news room is one that meets two objectives:

1. It can be quickly and easily maintained.

2. It offers a fulfilling user experience.

EASY, PEASY MAINTENANCE

blog post typeBasic blog functionality will help you achieve the first goal. Your news room should include most recent posts first, allowing users to navigate into past posts as they please. Your blog functionality should accommodate several types of posts, from videos to image-based to longer article style.

It will also incorporate social media in two ways:

A. Follow Us icons and links to further build your online following

B. Social sharing icons/links on each post page to extend your audience reach 

Integrate feeds from your Twitter, Facebook and event pages to display up-to-the-minute updates. 

NEWS ROOM MUST HAVES

media library sampleTo create a positive user experience, you’ll need to meet the needs for a variety of users. For example, your content should be well organized as an“asset” management tool for your media contacts. A place they can go to easily access information, images or videos about your company, its spokespersons and products/services.

Your audiences will appreciate the following information and materials:

Blog-style News Feed

News Release Archive

Media Kit Contents

–Annual Report(s)

–Company Backgrounder

–Fact Sheet(s) / Fast Facts

–Company History

Media Library

–Logos

–Images (Facility, Product, Executive Headshots)

–Videos

–Slideshows & Presentations

–Podcasts

–Webinars

About Us Content

–Investor Relations

–Company Fact Sheet

–Leadership Team

Contact Info

–Media Relations

–Sales

–Customer Service

–Marketing

Publicity Placements Archive

–PDFs of print placements

–Links to online placements

Resource Library

–Technical Papers

–Research Reports

–White Papers

Publicity Placement Archive

For your company’s own benefit, you’ll want to maintain a page within the news room that provides a detailed list of publicity placements (name of media outlet, title of placement, publish date, type of placement, author) along with a link to each placement (a PDF copy of the placement or link to the media outlet’s archived version of the article/video/audio placement). Sharing functionality will allow your visitors and brand ambassadors alike to easily spread the word across a variety of social and electronic channels.

YOUR NEWS ROOM’S HOME

news room ctaWhen communicating with your media contacts, you’ll frequently and consistently point them to your online news room to access information, images, etc. In electronic communications, you’ll include a hotlink (hyperlink) that takes your media contact directly to your news room.

But don’t stop there. Any great resource to the media becomes accessible day or night. You never know when a story idea will hit an editor, and if your press room is useful and memorable, he or she may just firm-up their story idea by taking a look at the information you’ve made easily available online. So, make sure that the URL of your press room is short, sweet and makes total sense. For example, “GreatCoUSA.com/newsroom.”

Of course, you’ll make sure your news room pages comply with all of the basic search engine optimization best practices so that when a reporter searches Google for “Great Co. USA annual report” she’ll be a click away.

Finally, you’ll want to make your new room easily available from your site’s Home Page and About Us section. Intuitively, the media will look for a Press Room link on these pages.

For public relations counsel, news room development guidance or media relations support, get in touch with the ePR pros at Responsory today.