Tapping the Web and New Media

Chapter 12

Public Relations Writing and Media Techniques (Sixth Edition) by Dennis L. Wilcox

  • The worldwide adoption towards Internet and the World Wide Web takes less than the adoption of any other mass medium in history.
  • The World Wide Web is the first medium that allows organizations to send controlled messages to a mass audience without the message being filtered by journalist and editors.

The new media & Web have unique characteristics, they are:

  1. Easy updating of material
  2. Instant distribution of information
  3. An infinite amount of space for information
  4. The ability to interact with the audience

“Publicizing and promoting a website are necessary to generate traffic. Print and Internet advertising, e-mail, hyperlinks, and putting the URL on all printed material are some ways to promote a site.”

Blogs have become mainstream in terms of numbers and influence. There are three kinds of blogs, coming from a Public Relations standpoint:

  1. Corporate
  2. Employee
  3. Third Party

Myspace and Facebook are the most popular for social networking sites.

Public Relations professionals need to understand that “traditional” media and “new” media are not mutually exclusive categories.

The traditional media is still alive and well. Regardless of the new media in public relations. The content is in traditional media and it often makes people aware of new products and services.

For more information on “New Media”  Go to this Hyperlink: What is NEW MEDIA?


Jeff Houck with Pitching to the Media

Jeff Houck from Tampa Tribune

Jeff Houck is a food writer for Tampa Tribune and food blogger at The Stew on TBO.com.

On Tuesday, April 5th, I was privileged to hear Jeff Houck speak in my PR Writing Class about “Pitching to the Media’. His experience and knowledge with journalism has helped me to look the “fun” aspect of journalism. Not many people can say how effective and how fun journalism can be. Jeff Houck is a humorous and truthful person whose knowledge towards pitching to the media was very insightful.

Ten things when Pitching to the Media:

  1. Relationships are key: having strong relationships with people will get you far. Why? Because these people may become your future clients or they may help you land a great job.
  2. Bad Language: when having a pitch, make sure it is clear and straight to the point. If there is too much going on, chances are that your story will not be published.
  3. Pitching Errors: Before submitting a story make sure that there are no errors. Make sure you proof read your story several times (have a second eye also) before submitting. This will make the process easier for you and the journalist to submit the story.
  4. Deadlines: Not many people are cautious of the time. Deadlines are extremely important and you have to submit the deadline as soon as possible, even weeks before can be better. This will give the journalist time to edit and possibly submit the story even sooner.
  5. Honesty: When receiving information, know that everyone is not going to be honest. Have a back up plan when you decide to do the “pitch”.
  6. Selling the Story: Know your story but not too much that you have to over sell it. “Don’t sell the product, sell the story.”
  7. Headlines: When writing your headline, keep it short, simple and catchy. “Cut to the chase”
  8. Title your Email Correctly: When emailing a news release or trying to consume some information, make sure your email is professional including the title. This will help you to quickly achieve your goal and it helps your email to not be thought of as spam.
  9. Ask the Journalist: Before you do anything on sending information to a journalist, make sure you ask what would they like to see and what are there pet peeves. This will make it less stressful while trying to release your story.
  10. Have fun with pitching: Love what you do while doing it. This will insure that your work will come out greatly. Pitching can be easy, simple, and fun if you follow all steps.

Follow: Jeff Houck on Twitter


Thank you to Barbara Nixon for having Jeff Houck speak in our PR Writing Class at Southeastern University.

Follow: Barbara Nixon on Twitter

Podcast: Have you tried?

Public Relations/Marketing Podcast

What are podcast?

Podcast- is a series of digital media files (either audio or video) that are released periodically and often downloaded through web syndication.

Where can you listen to Podcast through: You can listen to podcast through your computers media player, Apple I-tunes even through your blackberry.

  • Some podcast are 2 minutes long to 20 minutes long. It all depends on what your interest of podcast is.
  • These podcast have great insight from politics, to breaking news and, of course, to great public relations information   ” THE NEED TO KNOW BASICS OF PR.”

Listening to these podcast will benefit PR Practitioners and PR Students because of many different reasons:

  1. Listening to Podcast as a PR personnel, helps you obtain customer support. Podcast gives one the upper hand in knowing things that are not usually said through networking, internet and radio.
  2. Being a PR Practitioner- podcast can help market press release information for your organization (if it is non-profit).
  3. For PR Students– listening to podcast can help you obtain the newest information on product development and product launching that may affect or benefit your life as a pubic relations writer. For example: Listening to Grammar Girl has helped me to Digitally market myself by using Twitter. Twitter is fast, efficient and a quick communicator to other sources.

While listening to other podcast such as NPR, it has helped broaden my insight towards politics and marketing. In the podcast under “It’s All Politics”: It has made me laugh, and even wonder why do we involve ourselves in such chaotic confusion. This particular podcast goes in details about Presidency; such as Barack Obama and many other political candidates like Sarah Palin.

If you have not started listening to podcast, your missing out on this exciting new trend. Try it, you’ll love it!

PROpenMic by Robert French

PROpenMic is a great social network for PR students, faculty, and practitioners. Robert French created PROpenMic specifically for those within the range of being a PR student to practitioner for there benefit of marketing and learning ways to connect throughout the media.

This social network offers a wide variety of connections worldwide. PROpenMic offers your own profile, blogs, forums and much more. Get connected with PROpenMic and start your own profile to take advantage of the many connections.

The connections which I have found that are so useful are:

Also, Check out the ABOUT ROBERT FRENCH section to learn more!

My experience with Twitter

Using Twitter for the past week

Within the last week, using Twitter was a better experience than the previous weeks when I first started using it. I’ve had Twitter for about a year and it was not the same as using it with my class mates. The reason why I say this is because before I did not have many people to tweet to, but now I have people I actually know to tweet to back and forth. Twitter is now fun!  Also, I feel that there is more communication and social networking going on than when I first used Twitter.

I will continue using Twitter to stay updated with current news and current community involvements. Twitter has helped me to stay up to date with current issues in our world. Its kind of funny how it can be useful, and fun all at once.  So, if you have not used Twitter, or thought that its silly… I say give it a try for at least two weeks and follow people who you like. You will see how  Twitter is worth the time.

(Follow me on Twitter)

Social Media: Which ones do you participate in

Which types of social media are you currently participating in, which platforms you use, and why?

The types of social media that I currently participate in are:

  • Mixed Media, such as, designing, blogging and video advertising. Throughout SEU, I have made video advertisements for Student Publications. I have also help design layouts for the Torch Yearbook.
  • I use YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, and MySpace as a form of advertising and even communicating to keep in touch with events, friends and family.
  • Newspaper and Survey’s, I love participating in surveys that are about the issues of this world and local communities. For newspapers, I send requests for topics that I think should be approached and reported.

The platforms I use mostly are Facebook, twitter and wordpress.com for my blogging platforms. I use these particularly because they are appealing to the audience, known mostly to receive feedback about anything quickly and efficiently.

I have learned to advertise in various ways, through just Internet. Usually, when advertisement comes to mind people believe that it can be expensive but not really if you just use sites and links that are media prone.