One of your PR goals should be to help the media navigate your website quickly and find out if the experts at your company are what they're looking for. After that, you need to make sure reporters and editors can get everything they need from contact information to photos and maybe videos quickly and easily.
CREATING A MEDIA KIT OR PRESS PAGE FOR YOUR WEBSITE
Creating a good press page or media center on your website is simple, quick and easy. Here’s a few guidelines:
Where to Put Your Press Page or Media Kit
The press page or media kit on your website should be obvious and identifiable from the home page. And, it should have its own section of your website. Put a link to it in the main navigation bar, or in a navigation sidebar. Everything should be easy to find. Journalists work on very quick "turnaround" times… meaning they’re often under a fast-approaching deadline, and you don’t want a journalist to have to dig for information about you or your organization. Ever. They’re more likely to move on to your competitor.
Some companies choose to list a small section of press releases or previous media mentions on the home page to catch the eye. This is a good idea and The Insider strongly encourages you to consider it. Remember, the goal is to make it as easy as possible for the media to find out more about you.
Some companies make journalists register or set up an account to access the media page. The Insider strongly recommends against this… most journalists are wary of being put on a mailing list and receiving a lot of e- or snail-mail they may not want. Additionally, virtually every journalist receives many more story pitches and ideas than he or she could possibly cover. If a journalist wants to receive your updates, let him or her sign up for them via your website’ s newsletter sign up form. Most importantly, your press information and media coverage examples should be open to everyone including the public. They help establish your credibility as a business or organization, and that’s good for your bottom line.
The Key Elements Of Your Website Media Kit or Press Page
Every website media kit should include the following:
Contact info: The direct phone number and e-mail address for your designated media affairs representative, or for the specific members of your company you want the media to talk to. If you're worried about the wrong people reaching out to those contacts, put a disclaimer on there that people who are not members of the press should call customer support or another general number. The general public (with a few exceptions) is smart enough to know they're not a member of the press and should not call your direct number.
A direct e-mail address is much better than putting a generic contact form that reporters have to fill out and submit, which makes it harder to follow up or to even know whom to address. Again, the media moves quickly. If a journalist can't get in touch with you, they're checking with the next person…maybe your competitor.
Bios: Bios are particularly important if you're trying to get members of your company in front of the media for interviews and expert opinion. Providing some quick and easily digestible biographical information is important. Remember, journalists spend a very short amount of time - sometimes seconds - deciding whether the person they're reading about is the person they want to talk to. Showcase their credentials right away so reporters don't have to dig for that info.
An excellent basic formula is a biography that‘s professionally written in the third-person, and leads with the strongest credentials, advanced degrees and achievements. Previous media appearances in TV, print or online should absolutely be included, as they tell journalists that you‘re experienced in talking to the media, which will make their job easier. Some organizations choose to just put a snapshot of a person's credentials on the main press page with the option to click through for more detailed information. In this situation, list their best assets in bulleted lists so journalists can catch the gist of it quickly.
Additional Elements For Your Website Media Kit
Press releases: Include a list of your most recent press releases and an archive of your past releases, in chronological order. Keep these in traditional press release format and make sure they're readable across all platforms.
Video and audio: If you're trying to get a company executive or employee on TV to talk as an expert in the field, you want to reassure journalists that the person knows how to handle an interview. Post one or two of your best previous media appearance videos that highlight your composure. Just keep in mind that loading too many videos onto the press page risks creating slow load times.
Videos can also include demonstrations of your product in use or b-roll footage TV journalists can use to help flesh out a piece—or simply understand your product, service, or business better.
Photos and graphics: Artwork on your press page can include company logos, photos of top executives, product photos, recent charts or other graphical data. The Insider recommends two versions… 72 dpi for online use and higher resolution 300 dpi for traditional print publications.
The Bottom Line
When you put your website’s press page or media center together, think in terms of an overview, versus in-depth or detailed. Your goal is to highlight your company or organization, it’s products or services, the key players, and demonstrate (if you have it) that you, your organization and/or its key members have garnered previous media coverage and are experienced in talking to the press. If you think you’re putting too much information on your press page, or becoming too detailed, you probably are. Cut back just a bit.
The Insider cannot stress enough the use of bullet-pointed information. Bullet- points allow a journalist to quickly and easily read through and digest the information. Your organization’s overview and the bios of key team members should be short. Two to three paragraphs with no more than 5 sentences in each. Use bullet points to highlight the other milestones, accomplishments and achievements. From a visual design standpoint, your goal should be to avoid long blocks of text.