A sobering assertion by David Meerman Scott: "When a buyer is researching your product category by using a search engine, does it really matter if the first exposure is a hit on your website, a news release your organization sent, a magazine, article, or a post on your blog? I'd argue that it doesn't matter. The distinctions have nearly disappeared."
"On the Web," Scott says, "there is very little differentiation between types of content." In other words, it's all content now.
This sort of Web reality, as we've been seeing, is bad news for the mainstream media. By the same token, enlightened PR folks aren't merely preparing material for a reporter or editor's eyes any longer. You've got to plan for, or figure on, connecting with the Web-based public with whatever image or utterance you issue.
Even if you're in a local newspaper's so-called "captive market," you've got to realize that many people will be accessing the Web, not the paper. Sure, drop off a news release as you always have, it can't hurt. But realize that a more focused, search-armed audience is likely on the Web.
Doug Bedell has a background in journalism and PR and is the owner of Resource Relations LLC in Central PA, focusing on organizational and crisis communication. He’s the community manager of SimplyFair.net, a social network on fairness. On the Web, Doug’s at www.ResourceRelations.com. On Twitter, he’s @DougBeetle.
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