Imagine winning the lottery.
Imagine what it would be like.
How much did you win? A million? Five million? Maybe even 100 million dollars? (If you’re gonna dream, dream BIG, right?!)
What would you use the money for?
Pay off all your debts? Quit your job? Go on a vacation around the world? Open up a school in a third world country like Oprah?
What if you hit the big jackpot multiple times? What would that feel like?
What if someone gave you the secret to picking the winning numbers every time?
“Come on, Jeanne, let’s get real. We’re not living in La La Land.”
Okay, okay. Maybe there’s no secret formula for picking lottery numbers, but what if I told you that there IS a way to hit a jackpot that’s just as lucrative?
. . . and it’s a lottery you can actually win . . . many times over?
Winning the PR Lottery with Newsjacking
According to marketing strategist and author David Meerman Scott, “newsjacking” is “the process by which you inject your ideas or angles into breaking news, in real time, in order to generate media coverage for yourself or your business.”
One Blog Post in One Hour = One Million Dollars
In Scott’s latest book, Newsjacking: How to Inject your Ideas into a Breaking News Story and Generate Tons of Media Coverage, he tells the story of what Joe Payne (CEO of Eloqua) did upon hearing the news that software giant, Oracle, just acquired a competitor (Market2Lead).
Seizing the opportunity that no one’s written a story about this important acquisition in his market, he took to writing a blog post. And with this one post, which took a little over an hour to write, Payne was able to generate a million dollars’ worth of business!
So, how did he do it?
Anatomy of a Successful Newsjack
Here’s exactly what happened to help Payne land a million dollars’ worth of business with a single post:
- The news of the acquisition was hidden in an obscure part of Oracle’s website so not many people knew about it.
- The announcement was a short, one-paragraph statement that gave reporters very little information about the acquisition.
- No one’s written about the news yet.
- As a competitor and an industry expert, Payne was in a unique position to comment on the acquisition.
- Payne’s post provided valuable information and insight into the acquisition that Oracle’s short and hidden announcement failed to provide.
- Journalists and analysts are always hungry for a quote, and Payne’s commentary was quotable.
- And most importantly, Payne acted quickly to write the blog post and get it out to the public/media.
- The timely post resulted in media mentions by many media outlets.
- Leveraging the publicity generated and the credibility created by being quoted by reputable media outlets, Payne and his team contacted existing and potential clients of Market2Lead. And this resulted in Payne closing new business deals worth a million dollars.
More Examples of Newsjacking
Wth newsjacking, you are riding the wave of breaking news. While incredibly powerful, it can also go wrong . . . very, very wrong.
- GOOD newsjack – Paris Hilton: American hotel heiress and celebutante, Paris Hilton, was arrested in 2010 for drug possession. Wynn Resorts newsjacked the sensational story by banning Paris from its hotels Wynn Las Vegas and Encore resulting in more than 5,000 mentions from media outlets around the world.
- BAD newsjack – Kenneth Cole: American fashion designer, Kenneth Cole, untastefully inserted his company into the conversation during the uprising in Egypt when he tweeted: “Millions are in uproar in #Cairo. Rumor is they heard our new spring collection is now available online. . .” His extreme poor judgment caused an immediate uproar and tons of negative backlash. Within days, Kenneth Cole’s ‘Buzz’ scores (perception of brand) dropped from 8.7 to 2.8 (the industry average being 5.5).
- GOOD newsjack – Oakley: Maker of high-end sunglasses, Oakley gave away its expensive sunglasses to the 33 Chilean miners who were trapped for 69 days. When the trapped miners were finally rescued and emerged wearing $450 Oakley sunglasses, this product-placement highjack netted Oakley an estimated $41 Million in exposure.
- BAD newsjack – Ragu: Maker of pasta sauces, Ragu spammed a lot of dads via Twitter with a video that poked fun at dads and cooking. Not only was it in bad taste (pun intended), like the Kenneth Cole incident, it caused a backlash from the spammed dads and their followers with over 200 comments and more than 2,000 shares on just this one post.
So What Makes Newsjacking so Powerful?
It’s a technique that allows you bootstrapping entrepreneurs to generate a whole lotta media attention with very little investment of your time and money. Newsjacking levels the playing field by enabling you to compete with large companies with large PR budgets.
It’s guerilla marketing at its best.
What used to take years to accomplish now literally takes only moments.
A successful newsjacking:
- Increases your public profile
- Builds your authority
- Enhances your credibility
- Generates social proof
- Boosts targeted traffic
Newsjacking is the New Guest Posting
Guest posting is THE method these days to get traffic quickly. While it’s proven to be a reliable way to attract customers to a website, I believe those who harness the power of newsjacking can do better. Much, much better.
Here’s why newsjacking is better than guest posting:
- With guest posting, you have to constantly go after and pitch your idea to high-traffic blogs that may or may not accept your guest post. With a properly-executed newsjacking post, you can have multiple media outlets coming to YOU.
- With guest posting, you are writing for someone else’s blog. With newsjacking, you are writing for YOUR OWN blog.
- With guest posting, you do not have full editorial control over contents and comments. With newsjacking, you do.
- With guest posting, you are writing one guest post to attract the traffic of one blog. With newsjacking, you are one newsjack post away from being exposed to thousands, if not hundreds of thousands, of visitors from multiple media outlets within a short period of time.
- With guest posting, the SEO benefits are so-so. With newsjacking, the SEO benefits are out of this world! Think of all the link juice passed on to you when major media and news organizations link to a post on YOUR blog.
A Step-by-Step Guide to Newsjacking
At first glance, newsjacking may seem like the answer to a traffic monger’s dream.
But it’s definitely much easier said than done.
To pull it off successfully, you need a great deal of strategizing. And more importantly, you need the ability to strategize on the fly.
Scott’s book is relatively short and focuses mainly on the theory of newsjacking. While Scott definitely offers up some great tips and advice on how to proceed, it does not go far enough.
So I’m going to devote this upcoming week to planning my own newsjacking strategy. And the best part? I’m going to share it with you in my next post. And in the weeks to come, I will reveal the exact methods and steps I’m taking to generate media mentions via newsjacking and the results I got from each effort. I’m calling it the AppsBlogger
Newsjacking Leverage Marketing Experiment.
I will use newsjacking partly to promote the upcoming release of my mobile app and partly to promote this blog.