How to use newsjacking: 6 tips for content marketers

Specialists in the field of content marketing are daily fighting for the relevance and relevance of their articles and reviews. Newsjacking is one of the most effective tools to help win this fight for the minds of readers.

Newsjacking (eng. Newsjacking) is the process of integrating a brand and ideas into a current news background. The author of this term is well-known marketer David Mirman Scott.

The word newsjacking is consonant with the term hijacking, meaning pirate capture of a passenger plane. This is not an accident - marketing newsjackers literally take on boarding news and informational occasions that everyone has heard, playing with them and using them in advertising their product.

Frankly, David Mirman Scott did not invent the bicycle, offering the world the concept of newsjacking. For many years, PR specialists have been using the current news background in the interests of their business. But Mr. Scott showed an example of aggressive use of news in content marketing, which is his undoubted merit.

What benefits do you get by becoming a newsjacker or a news pirate?

  • Traffic growth (through search engines and news aggregators).
  • Attracting the attention of visitors to your materials and an increase in the number of comments.
  • Integration of your ideas or brand in the daily news background.
  • Informational leadership in the market.

Newsjacking is a constant balancing on the edge of what is permitted. The examples below will help you use the news for marketing purposes, without crossing the line of vulgarity and immorality.

Examples of using newsjacking

  • Spirit Airlines saves customers from falling off a cliff (fiscal)

Spirit Airlines, a US airline discount airline, is actively using email to drive sales. Some of the emails from this company are vivid examples of newsjacking.

For example, in December last year, Spirit Airlines marketers used the fear of US residents over the so-called “fiscal cliff” - an automatic increase in taxes and a reduction in government spending. American politicians had to agree before December 31, 2012 on ways to reduce the budget deficit in order to prevent these events.

“The break, which everyone fears,” such words were written by the airline's marketing specialists in the subject line. In the message, they beat the English phrase fiscal cliff (fiscal cliff), offering customers a discount on air tickets in the amount of $ 50.

Spirit Airlines experts also used other high-profile topics, for example, the pre-election debates of US presidential candidates, in their advertisements.

  • NFL monitors the life of monarchs

The National Football League makes extensive use of content marketing by regularly publishing information relevant to American football fans on its blog. Note that the NFL never lacks thematic news. However, sometimes the marketers of this organization go beyond the usual framework.

When Prince William and Kate Middleton announced that they would have a heir, the NFL immediately used this news story for its own advertising. In the league blog post appeared with photos of seven players, whose names "are related to the kings." The NFL invited future parents to name their child in honor of an American football player.

  • Public organization Save the Children reacts to the tragedy at Sandy Hook School

The mass shooting at the American Sandy Hook School has deeply shook people all over the world. The non-profit organization Save the Children, which deals with the protection of children, immediately responded to this tragedy. She distributed a letter with advice to parents who want to help their children cope with the stress caused by television stories from Newtown.

Please note, this example is not related to the use of news to solve commercial problems. Newsjaker can cross the line by working with negative informational messages, especially tragic ones.

The Save the Children organization gracefully offered relevant and useful branded content to the audience. But any attempts to speculate on such topics can turn into serious trouble for your company.

Six Tips to Help You Become a Newsjacker

You probably already have a few ideas related to using the latest news to popularize your brand. It is good that the examples discussed above inspired you.

But first, learn six tips to help you use newsjacking properly and avoid common mistakes.

  1. Stay up to date

You should follow the news if you want to become a real newsjacker. Use several channels of information.

A specialized industry website covering your company's business should be one of them.

An online resource that is popular with your customers will help you create materials that are interesting to consumers. For example, if youth is your target group, find a resource about pop culture and celebrity life.

Finally, news from local and national general resources may also interest you. Be sure to follow the accuracy of the facts, so as not to build marketing on the rumors.

  1. Feel your audience

When choosing a news occasion for newsjacking, be insightful. A military coup, the death of a famous person, a natural disaster - these are not the best examples for use in marketing messages. Many experts do not understand this, unsuccessfully speculating on sensitive topics.

For example, American manufacturer and retailer American Apparel tried to play on the topic of Superstorm Sandy. This company offered consumers to visit shops and buy goods at a discount, "if they miss during a hurricane." People whose houses were damaged by the elements literally flooded the mailboxes of the company with complaints and negative reviews, demanding that the speculation on the subject of the storm be stopped.

  1. Act fast

Try to use news feeds as quickly as possible to maximize the effectiveness of newsjacking. Remember - you are not the only one who watches the latest events.

Please note that US companies are still releasing press releases in early January, trying to play on the topic of Hurricane Sandy. This storm ended at the end of October last year!

  1. Organically link the news about your brand.

Do not "push" the news to your marketing campaign. Stop using messages that are not of interest to your customers.

News feeds used for newsjacking should have some relevance to your business. In this case, you don’t need to pull over explanations and make excuses.

  1. Let consumers find a positive in every message.

Newsjacking requires a positive outlook on events. This is especially important if you use any negative news. However, in no case try to speculate on catastrophes, tragedies and other similar events.

Keep in mind the mistake of designer Kenneth Cola who unsuccessfully joked about mass protests in Cairo in 2011. He tweeted: “Millions of people took to the streets of Cairo, hearing about our spring clothing collection.” After two hours, the designer was forced to publish a message with apologies.

  1. Use keywords

Increasing the visibility of your content in search engines is one of the main tasks of newsjacking. Keywords will help you solve it. Remember, you first need to apply queries that are relevant to your business. However, you can also unobtrusively use "keys" that are relevant to the news event.


Newsjacking is expanding its arsenal of content marketing specialists, increasing the effectiveness of promoting business on the Internet. However, this way of working with news is a very delicate tool, the careless use of which can ruin a company's reputation.

Do you think it is worth actively using newsjacking? Share your thoughts in the comments.

Adaptation of the material Mark Sherbina Newsjacking: 6 Tips to Help Your Use.

Watch the video: Best Content Marketing Examples - January 2018 (April 2020).


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