When it comes to adding content to your website there are lots of possibilities, such as product descriptions, articles, news and blogs – but one possibility you might not have considered adding is a media centre.
The fact is though, if you don’t have a media centre on your website you’re missing what could be a lot of golden opportunities to promote your business. It’s also a lot easier than you might think to set up and operate one.
Here are just a few good reasons why you should have a media centre, AKA a press page or media page:
> A media centre is considered good for SEO. It’s a relatively easy way to get more content on your site to boost your chances of being found in searches.
> If you don’t have one chances are journalists and editors who are looking for information will go to your competitors rather than ask for it.
> Big companies invariably have one. Which tends to suggest that they bring results.
> They can be an excellent way of getting easy and FREE publicity for your business. By and large journalists and editors in the offline press, TV and radio and online media are hungry for more news stories. Having a media centre means (hopefully) that rather than you having to go to them with stories they will come to you. In practice it simplifies and automates the whole process of getting your news in the press.
How to set up your media centre:
One of the most important things is to make sure that your press and media pages are user-friendly. Chronological order is the usual approach. But it should also be searchable so that users can find the stories and the different media they are interested in. Also consider creating several categories – for example ‘People’ and ‘Products’ or ‘Personal Finance’ and ‘Corporate Finance’ so your content is easier to find.
What to include in your media centre:
There are lots of possibilities here. Whatever you opt for, try to ensure new content is added regularly, ie. several times a week or even daily, to make sure it has a real newsroomy, current feel:
> Press releases. These will probably form the bulk of content on your media centre. In fact you can even build a media centre on press releases alone. You can create and publish stories on, for example, your company, your products and your people.
Bear in mind that a media centre isn’t exactly the same as a blog (although you may have some content that is interchangeable). Press releases need to be topical, newsworthy and written in a style that the press can cut and paste or easily edit.
If you need help with creating and writing press releases I can do this for you. Just get in touch with me at email@example.com
> An image gallery. Add photos that are relevant to your press releases and others that the press might want to use eg. your products, premises and staff.
> Company logos. If you’re willing for the press to download and use them. (As with anything else within a media centre only add content that you’re willing to have reproduced and shared.)
Ideally make sure any photos and logos are large enough to be used in print as well as online, ie. 5MB that will print at 300 dpi should cover most eventualities.
> Audio and video content. If you have it. This will allow the press to, for example, share your video online or create podcasts.
> Other content. If you want to create fact sheets relating to your business, publish statutory financial/investor information or details of your company’s charitable activities etc. you can also add it to your media centre.
> Contact details. This is easily overlooked, but ensure that as well as including this on every press release there is also an email and ideally mobile number for enquiries. This should be someone who’s able to field press enquiries and arrange for information to be provided or questions to be answered.
Once you have a media centre there’s always the chance you could be contacted by the TV, radio or press for comment on an important or breaking news story!
Mark Hempshell is a copywriter and content marketer. You can contact him with questions and queries here: Mark Hempshell