Newsrooms are shrinking. Reporters are stretched. The news landscape is changing and we as communicators need to change with it, or our clients risk getting left behind.
Here at Vanguard, we love finding creative solutions to meet our clients’ needs while navigating the reality of a reporter’s schedule. One method we’ve had considerable success with, is the online press conference. Here’s what you need to know about them:
- They allow reporters to join a live presentation either by viewing the event through their computer or by listening in on the phone.
- They are great for letting your client share slides and videos with reporters.
- They are a valuable tool for allowing reporters to ask questions to your client either through a chat box or through their phone lines.
- These can be recorded and the link can be sent to reporters who couldn’t attend.
- They have the capability to track journalists who register and those that actually attend, making follow-ups a breeze.
- There are a number of vendors who can help you set up and manage an online press conference, such as ReadyTalk or Adobe Connect.
Online press briefings are particularly effective when you’re dealing with a national issue that’s being covered by reporters all across the country. Publicists are no longer limited by location and can invite media who might be interested in the contents of the briefing, but cannot attend in person.
We recently disseminated the findings of the American Psychological Association’s annual Stress in America™ survey via an online briefing and had reporters from all across the country attend. As a result, we were able to engage with a large number of reporters and generate the maximum impact for our client.
Online press briefings also allow for greater flexibility in scheduling. Clients are no longer limited to holding a conference when a particular room is available.
The next time you have big news to share and you’re not sure if a reporter can step away from their desk to attend a press conference— no problem — bring the conference to their desk!
Look out for part two of this series, where we share tips for planning and executing a successful online press conference.