By Natalie Ghidotti, APR
It’s no shocker that online video consumption continues increasing at a rapid pace. According to comScore’s Video Metrix, 190.3 million Americans watched online content videos last summer.
Videos are easily viewed from a variety of devices – whether that’s a smartphone, tablet or desktop computer. They’re also entertaining, while informing. Think of the number of videos you probably watch just in your Facebook feed alone. Don’t tell me you haven’t clicked on one of those Buzzfeed videos before. We all have!
So knowing that people like to watch things, it’s no surprise that using video in your media relations efforts can result in better engagement, clearer understanding and increased dialogue. Reporters and editors – (gasp!) they’re just like us! The gal you’ve been trying to pitch for a year at the New York Times likes watching engaging content just as much as you and your friends.
Our firm has worked over the past few years to incorporate video into all of our PR campaigns. We’ve had some great success in using video for everything from media relations to blogger relations to direct marketing. Here are two recent “wins” when it comes to using video for media relations.
Alliance Rubber Company
We wanted to tell the story of this 92-year-old family-owned company that is the world’s largest manufacturer of rubber bands. Alliance is located in a small town in Arkansas and represents U.S. manufacturers who are dedicated to keeping jobs and dollars in our country.
Our goal was to share the story of Alliance’s rich history and product innovation to key national media, including the Wall Street Journal. We conducted our normal background work and had chosen the reporters we felt would be most interested in learning more about Alliance. As part of our relationship building with these reporters, we sent them a video we created to give a good overview of the company and hit on all of our key messages.
A few days after we sent the video to our Wall Street Journal reporter, he emailed us with an interest in learning more and talking to Alliance’s chief executive officer. Through the power of video, we were able to quickly tell the Alliance story and pique enough interest for him to want to know more. The interview went well and was a great follow up to a story he had recently written on the manufacturing of paper clips.
Here’s a link to the story: http://www.wsj.com/articles/u-s-rubber-band-maker-survives-by-stretching-its-portfolio-of-products-1401382522
McDonald’s Central Arkansas Co-op
If you watched the Super Bowl or followed the commercial launches the following day, then you are probably familiar with McDonald’s “Pay With Lovin’” campaign. The company ran its first Super Bowl spot in eight years and launched a two-week campaign where customers were randomly chosen to “pay with lovin’” – a fist bump, a hug, a call to a loved one, even a Hog call (probably only witnessed in Arkansas).
We wanted to make sure the customers in Central Arkansas were well aware of the Pay With Lovin’ promotion. What better way to do that than to produce a video showing all the lovin’ from the first day (when 88 central Arkansas stores gave away free meals to more than 3,000 people)! We sent a video crew out to several of the restaurants, and had a 1-minute long finished product the next morning.
We used the video to push out on our social portals and, most importantly, send to local TV stations for use as b-roll. Our results were phenomenal. All four stations in the market used the video at some level – two that showed the entire video on air and online. All of them tweeted it, several posted to Facebook, and one radio station made the video its “Video of the Day.”
We garnered so much media social love that a reporter with MediaBistro contacted McDonald’s Corporate to ask what in the world was going on in Little Rock that the media was all over the Pay With Lovin’ promo! Needless to say, the power of video worked beautifully with this particular PR outreach.
Here’s a link to the ABC station coverage: http://www.katv.com/story/28016217/central-arkansas-customers-pay-with-love-at-mcdonalds
When strategizing for your next media outreach, think of how you can use video to your benefit. Words are great, but seeing is believing!