June 11, 2012
How Following the Strategies of the Top 20
Tech Feature Stories of 2011 Can Help You
Score Massive Media Coverage
Dorothy York, President and CEO of North American Precis Syndicate (NAPS)
Every year, North American Precis Syndicate (NAPS) ranks the top technology stories by highest number of placements in media outlets nationwide. The technology stories with the highest results in 2011 were from a variety of companies including hardware manufacturers, software developers, e-commerce sites, social media sites, companies with new mobile apps, home theater equipment manufacturers, accessory manufacturers, an e-mail provider and many others. What are the "magic" qualities that these stories have—that you can use to supercharge results for your next media relations campaigns?
These articles are filled with advice from experts, the latest statistics, results from surveys, money-saving ideas and other helpful information for consumers. The most popular subject matter included information about trends, concerns about privacy and security, Internet accessibility and a wide range of useful tips. The stories had eye-catching graphics and good statistics from reliable sources.
Based on feedback from editors, what sets these stories apart from others are the quality of the writing, especially in the headlines, leads and captions that appeal to their readers.
Here are the top 20 examples of the tech topics most popular with editors, with a few tips from the highest achievers:
Case-Mate—Getting Ready for the Great Outdoors
To promote the protective case for cell phones for Case-Mate, a spectacular photo was used to attract people with active lifestyles. A cyclist is shown doing a face plant in the dirt while falling off his bike with his shoe flying into the air. His agonized expression as he looks at his phone in the dirt seems to be due to his concern for the device as much as it is about his physical discomfort. This story appeals to people on an emotional level. Case-Mate obtained 1,272 placements in 36 different states with a reach of more than 50 million readers. Additionally, 87 percent of the placements were in the top 100 markets.
Century 21—Shopping for a Home on Your Phone
Targeting younger, tech-savvy homebuyers, Century 21 creates an awareness of the ability to get over 3 million listings from mobile devices using the new app. The article includes statistics about social media and mobile device usage. Readers are invited to begin a property search with virtual tours at the Web addresses provided. Editors like stories that appeal to the Millennial Generation.
Comcast—Why Are Some Americans Still Not Connected to the Internet?
To inform parents about a new program to provide low-cost Internet access and affordable computers, Comcast used staggering statistics from the FCC and the Department of Commerce's National Telecommunications and Information Administration, which indicated that about 33 percent of American homes are not connected to the Internet. Editors are more likely to pick stories that have a broad-based appeal and offer readers a reward; in this case, affordable resources.
Intel—Humans Are Visual Beings: Technology Can Help
The results of a recent global study by Harris Interactive were used in a story for Intel about the new processors. Information about the second-generation core processor was included to show how these help to "enable, empower and enrich the way you can see, share and live with your computer." The benefits of the new technology, relating to HD, 3-D viewing and awesome performance for mainstream gaming, were detailed and a link for more information was included.
Staples—Trend Spotting: Beyond the Basics
In a back-to-school story for Staples targeting college kids and parents, the focus was on trends for bargain hunters looking for laptops, tablets, e-readers and other supplies. The article encouraged kids to be socially conscious to be cool, included information about kids who won design contests with their art supplies to create a competitive spirit, and gave kids one more reason to buy.
Memory Lane—Nostalgia Is Better Than Ever
Targeting boomers who want to relive the events that shaped their lives with a tremendous amount of images, videos, music, magazines and other content, MemoryLane.com drives traffic to its site where those have been preserved.
Boys Town—Nothing's Secret on Social Media
Targeting families with a message to protect and educate children, Father Boes warns that information put on social media profiles is public and searchable. The article encourages parents to help children decide what information can and should be shared and what should stay secret.
Blu-Ray—Bring Your Home Entertainment System Up to Speed
Home theater enthusiasts are provided with options for affordable, high-quality viewing from Blu-ray. The versatility and sheer power of the systems are highlighted to attract consumers to the site for the next generation of devices.
CNET—Tips on Shopping for High-Tech Gifts
Consumers are informed about the CNET site, which offers videos, comparisons, links to retailers and more to help with shopping decisions. The How To section of the site is described as a place for users to get the most out of their devices.
Facebook—Five Ways to Better Share With Friends Online
This article informs people about how to better share with friends and family members online, including tips on starting a group, organizing with icons and pictures, and updating a group.
Sprint—Oh, Gee—Is 4G Right for Me?
This article creates an awareness of a new generation of smartphones that has been developed to take advantage of the faster speeds offered by the 4G network, including 18 devices developed by Sprint.
Vonage—Save on Overseas Calls While Traveling
Consumers are alerted by Vonage about the latest iPhone app, which can save money on phone calls made while traveling overseas.
Hotmail—Nothing Says Spring-cleaning Like an In-box Intervention
E-mail users are given tips from Hotmail on how to clean out their in-boxes to help computers run better.
Microsoft—Clouds in the Forecast: Good News for Small Businesses
Airfoil Public Relations created the feature release, which aligned to Microsoft's cloud computing campaign. The campaign was designed to educate and empower small and midsized businesses (SMBs) to see the value and opportunity that cloud solutions offer and to showcase Microsoft as a cloud technology educator. It included five benefits: reliability, mobility, flexibility, efficiency and integration. To meet that goal, Airfoil developed the content and worked in partnership with NAPS for distribution. The release generated hundreds of news articles in outlets in 24 states with a readership of more than 13.4 million.
Microsoft—A Little Help From the Cloud Makes a Big Difference
To attract attention for Office 365, Microsoft included a contest offer of $50,000 in advertising and business services and a person to work for the charity of choice of the winner.
Cloudmark—Identity Security at Your Fingertips
Results of a survey by Harris Interactive were provided with tips from Cloudmark on how to prevent ID theft and sophisticated, malicious spam.
iKeepSafe—Don't Let Bad Things Happen to Your Family
The dangers of clicking on the wrong link are indicated by iKeepSafe, with information about criminal hackers and spammers who use links to gain control of devices and data.
Projections of what people could save on home phones over two years are offered by Ooma, with expert advice on how individuals can find a phone system.
AutoTrader—New Ways to Sell or Trade a Vehicle Online
Six tips on how to prepare to trade in old vehicles are offered by the experts at AutoTrader.com along with statistics from NADA.
Yahoo!—How Technology Has Changed the Way We Eat
This article creates an awareness of how to find recipes and restaurants with phone apps and laptops and gives advice from Yahoo!
Each of these stories was sent to more than 10,000 newspapers and thousands of online publications nationwide. The formats used to distribute these articles included CD's, camera-ready repro proofs, RSS feeds by subject on www.napsnet.com, e-mails, Twitter feeds to thousands of followers, and postings to the NAPS blogs and social media pages. SEO techniques were utilized, including word tagging, and hyperlinks drove traffic back to client sites.
North American Precis Syndicate (NAPS) is a service that distributes publicity in a variety of formats to 10,000+ newspapers, thousands of online publications, 6,500+ radio stations and 1,000+ TV stations nationwide. Formats include CDs, camera-ready repro proofs, postings on www.napsnet.com as dowloadable files for editors with RSS feeds by subject, e-mails, Twitter feeds @NAPSnews, Facebook posts, social media, blogs, tapes, the NAPS YouTube Channel, podcasting via iTunes and more. Expected results are 100 to 400 placements in print, 400+ placements in online publications with each print release, 300+ on-air placements for each Radio Feature Release and 100+ on-air placements for each Video Feature Release. NAPS guarantees complete satisfaction with each release or another one free! For information or a free proposal, e-mail email@example.com, call (800) 222-5551 or visit www.napsinfo.com.