Understanding the “New” Newswire

Garnering the attention of media has only become more difficult with the advent of social media and other platforms where journalists are increasingly getting their news. Getting a news outlet to see your press release has become significantly harder, due in large part to newswires.

Newswires, such as PR Newswire and Business Wire are still valuable distribution vehicles for press releases, but the way journalists interact with wires has changed significantly. According to a recent survey of 80 U.K. journalists, they responded with the following:

What do you use newswires for? 78% said they use newswires for news stories, 56% use it for article and feature ideas and 56% use it for monitoring industry trends.
Which newswires do you find most valuable? 54% cited PR Newswire, followed by Press Association (38%), SourceWire (37%) and lastly, Business Wire (34%).
How often do you use newswires? 37% said daily, 30% said occasionally, 21% said never.

Some survey respondents had a negative view on the mass distribution systems saying that they benefit from exclusivity and the wire poses a problem because everyone is getting the same source, or the same press release. They also said that most of the wires are not comprehensive enough and don’t provide accurate targeting, so they end up with a bunch of material they have no use for.

In the end, the journalists say the best way to target them is to not only follow them on social media, but to understand what they cover and to align your content or press release with their beat.

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