Since the rise of social media platforms including Twitter and Facebook, it has often been said that traditional, old, media is either dead or dying. But talk of its demise is greatly exaggerated. The two are, in fact, as important as each other. Initially though, it's important to set out what the differences are between the two.
Old media includes traditional newspapers trade and other publications and broadcast outlets such as the BBC and other broadcasters. New media covers the internet, social media platforms and includes online outlets such as YouTube.
In this article we are going to identify five reasons why old media is as important as new media when you are approaching a PR strategy for your small business.
Old media is adapting to the times
Those who say that old media is no longer important, and that digital PR has taken over, often miss the fundamental point that old media channels are actually adapting to the times. In most, if not all, cases the traditional media outlets have set up, and are using, their own accounts on the relevant new media outlets.
This means that if you send your press release to a journalist from a traditional news source (such as The Guardian or The Times) and they decide to cover your business, your story will be distributed among their followers online, as well as those who consume their news through traditional means. Additionally, it has become clear that journalists are now using these new media outlets to source stories for their article.
For example, the hashtag #journorequest is a great way to find requests for stories- you will just need to be patient and scroll through to find relevant ones as the hashtag has become very popular in recent years.
Same publications, new media
While it's true that lots of people are consuming their news through new media (such as on social media platforms including Twitter), in many cases they are still actually consuming the same or similar publications as before. The first reason for this is as mentioned above, because these publications have adapted to using things such as social media to share and pick up their news, as part of their updated business model.
But there is another reason. Many of us now have tablets and smartphones, with access to millions of Apps as part of the relevant online stores. The two largest companies offering phone operating systems, Apple and Google, have 'News' apps on their respective devices. You can use these to filter news according to your preferences, including which publications you want to hear from.
You also have access to download the (usually free) apps from the individual publications too. So who knows- if you distribute a press release today as part of your small business PR strategy, you could be reading your story in your Google or Apple News app tomorrow morning!
You can incorporate the two together
As we've mentioned previously, journalists and old media outlets have adapted to the times, which means you can actually incorporate new and old media into one PR strategy for your small business. One element of this strategy would mean engaging with journalists and bloggers through social media.
For example, it is likely journalists looking for lots of images as part of their stories are likely to be looking through Instagram, so if they are your target media it would be a good idea to be active on that platform.
The rise of fake news
Since new media channels, including social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter, became popular, cases of fake news have drastically increased. It's fair to say that the issue has become more prevalent in the age of new media. For many, therefore, old media is considered as a trusted backup for news stories.
In July last year we organised a survey of 1,000 people in the UK to find out how often they believe they encounter fake news online. One of our key findings was that 45% believe they encounter fake news online every single day. Additionally, we found that at its peak, there were around 200 million monthly engagements with fake news stories on Facebook. The company (and other platforms) are dealing with the issue, but it's still a problem.
With social media content being primarily user-generated, having a mix of new and old media will allow your PR strategy to navigate any issues relating to fake news.
People are still consuming news from papers
In our survey of 2,000 people nationwide last October to find out more about how they consume their news, while we found there was a decline in daily sales of national newspapers, there are still a significant number of people who consume their news from papers.
The survey found, for example, that only 38% of people never buy newspapers. This means that the vast majority (62%) still buy them, at least a few times a year.
The results also show that around two-thirds of those aged 35 and above buy newspapers every single day.
The takeaway is very clear. Your messages and news releases should be engaging with both new and traditional media and that's why JournoLink is optimised to achieve access to both. Just make sure you select your sectors of business interest and we'll get your press release to the journalists who work on them in both new and traditional media.