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Written by The Mezzanine Group
on December 19, 2011

Generating news always seems to be a challenge for many companies, particularly, small and mid-sized organizations. We meet many companies who have not updated their website news page in years; or it’s been very infrequent with 1 or 2 posts per year.

The reason being is that companies struggle with creating news. Whether it’s a function of time, a function of not knowing when something is newsworthy, or a function of not knowing how to share that news, it doesn’t reflect well on the company.

Generating and sharing news on a consistent basis helps to increase brand awareness, keeps a company’s website fresh (which is good for search engine optimization), and gives the company a good reason to shout from the rooftops.

Why is creating news a challenge? It’s all in the way we think about it. Traditionally, when companies create news it involves: 1) identifying a news story; 2) creating a press release; 3) generating a press release. Many companies can identify a news story – it could be a new product, receiving an award, highlighting a customer success story – where they struggle is the effort that needs to go into creating a press release and getting it out to the media. Often, by the time they get around to it, the news isn’t so new anymore.

While developing press releases is still an important aspect of generating and sharing news, there’s another way that companies can share news which may be a little more palatable. Generating and sharing shorter snippets of news. Creating press releases can be daunting and not always necessary.

For example, if you want to share an industry report or a link to an article in which your company was featured, develop a 1-2 paragraph summary. It can still contain a date, intriguing headline, however, you’re providing a high-level summary with link to a relevant website, webpage on your site, PDF document, etc. This requires a lot less effort and helps a company to create a two-tiered system for news; creating press releases when it’s relevant which is usually for a major announcement or achievement.

So, try it out. Next time, your company has something relevant to share but doesn’t require a press release, develop a couple of paragraphs to summarize the news item, post it on your website and keep the effort going. Involving staff can be a great way to keep the effort going by encouraging them to share relevant industry reports, teasers of upcoming products/services or updates, and more.

The key is consistency. If you can aim to share at least 1-2 news items per month it will keep your website fresh, show prospects that you are current and help to increase awareness.

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