You've surely heard the term "social media news release" in all the buzz about the new, social Web, but what does it mean? A social media news release is just like a traditional news release, except that it is also social media and Web 2.0 optimized. In short, this kind of news release encourages interactivity, is easily shared in the social Web, and contains a number of other Web 2.0 elements.
Generally, these additional elements include:
* Multimedia items, such as downloadable images, PDF/DOC files, or audio/video files.
* A way for readers to comment directly on the news release content.
* An obvious and easy way for readers to bookmark the news release in social bookmarking sites, or to share it via email.
* Technorati tags and links to purpose-built del.icio.us pages.
If you or your business produce online or email press releases regularly, you should be utilizing social media news releases. Like everything else on the Internet today, there is an expectation that content will be interactive, easily shared, and will offer sources to similar information. If your news releases do not live up to these expectations, your chances for major media coverage may be hurt. It's fairly simple to create your own social media releases, or you can use a service like PRWeb. And, since a social media news release is just a traditional release with added elements, you do not need to change your present format, just include some additional sections. These added elements include:
Multimedia section: Here you will offer a number of downloadable items, including PDF or Word documents, such as book excerpts, advanced reviews, white papers, brochures, etc., and images, like author photos, company executive photos, book cover art, company logos. Also provide any relevant podcasts and video clips in this section.
Technorati tag section: Use this section to list links to Technorati pages that are tagged with a list of good key terms relevant to your news release.
Social bookmarking section: In this section, provide links to any of your relevant purpose-built del.icio.us pages. You could also provide links to relevant pages on Digg.com or any other social bookmarking and crowd-sourced news sites.
Sharing and commenting: In addition to the sections listed above, you should also make it as easy as possible for your readers to share or bookmark your release in any number of ways. Allowing visitors to comment on your news release makes it truly interactive.
Social media section: If you don't have a social media newsroom to refer your readers to, you should consider adding a section to your news release that lists where you have a presence in the social Web. Link to your profiles in places like MySpace, Facebook, Squidoo, Twitter, Flickr, YouTube, etc.
Creating your news releases using a blogging platform like WordPress makes it easy to incorporate the additional social media optimizing features. Commenting is already built in, and there are a number of good plugins for adding Technorati tags to WordPress posts and for social bookmarking, among other features.
Check out some social media news release examples here:
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