Question: I’m hearing more and more about brand journalism and wonder if my company should start a brand journalism initiative. Can you give me an overview of brand journalism? What is it? How is different than PR and content marketing?
Looking into brand journalism
Dear Looking into brand journalism:
Brand journalism showcases your company’s expertise with good storytelling techniques. It’s different than PR that promotes news and it’s not the same as marketing that strives to generate sales leads. Companies write their own stories as if they were journalists. You are in the driver’s seat, interviewing customers, writing feature stories, showcasing what’s new and different. Instead of waiting for a reporter to respond to your pitch about interviewing your company CEO, you write and publish that interview as part of your brand journalism program.
[bctt tweet=”With brand journalism, you write and publish that CEO interview instead of waiting for a reporter to respond to your pitch about interviewing your company CEO.” username=”MartellComm”]
It’s a way to invite your prospective customers to learn about your company. If you provide helpful, informative content, your prospects will come back for more. And, the writing doesn’t sell, it informs.
For PR purposes, the idea here is to write the story that a reporter would write. Brand journalism works only if your story is credible, is helpful to the reader and doesn’t use corporate-speak and jargon. If the story is self-serving or it is designed to sell, it’s not brand journalism. It’s marketing.
- Write content just as the editors do
- Ask for guest posts for your company blog from outside experts
- Create a community for your target audience and encourage sharing of information
- Provide perspective on what’s happening in the market
Why is brand journalism becoming more popular? You can write content that is interesting that your customers want to know more about! You aren’t constrained by the issues a publication faces such as time or space or lack of staff. Brand journalism gives your company a chance to talk about key issues in your industry.
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