In this year’s journalist survey, we asked journalists open-ended questions regarding their news release preferences, how their jobs have changed, social media usage and more.
Here are some of the things they told us in their own words…
- I prefer to receive releases via e-mail and am looking for a link to provide in my tweets and an eye-catching photo. I also want quotable blurbs with detailed descriptions of the product, service, etc. and why this is important.
- There’s a greater need for artwork and, therefore, more attention paid to it. Also, I use more infographics but have to educate graphic artists and publicists about requirements. I find that I’m educating publicists more and more. Ugh.
- Material comes in quicker and hopefully in formats where they can be easily adapted to our editing system — fewer paper releases means less time retyping. Being able to attach photos, etc., electronically saves time and energy.
- (I want releases as) Emails with attached 72 dpi graphics for web. 300 dpi or the ultra-low-rez that you have require photoshopping the files. We don’t always mess with them.
- I prefer e-mail newsletters with links to online stories/media room for more details. Never attach photos or other large files to e-mails, but do provide links to where I can access them.
- I expect them to have more online in their press rooms. Too often press rooms cover “coverage” i.e. past stories of other journalists, ridiculous… we can’t use that. We need current news or recent past press releases and downloadable photos instantly…I hate having to find a PR person to give me a way to download photos.
- (I want releases via) Email with cut & paste text, attached high-res photos or link for downloads, video links (if applicable) and contact info for person who can answer questions.
- Deliver (news releases) via email, include links to high quality image/video assets. (I want releases via) email with photo or graphics, less likely to use without some visual.
- Some corporate websites make obtaining news releases, photos, other material easy; others, have to search all over creation to find media material. Biggest bugaboos with electronic news releases are PDFs that either can’t be copied into Word, or if copied into Word formatting falls to pieces, (2) low res photos not suited for print, and (3) news releases, either Word or PDF that have product names in all caps with a copyright or trademark symbol after every name. These are either summarily trashed or given extremely low priority because of all the time required to take out the all caps names and copyright/trademark symbols.
- Digital makes it easier to get background information and double-check facts. I can also see how extensively a topic has already been covered in other media. Conversely, I can find topics covered elsewhere that inspire ideas for our own stories.
- I prefer to get releases via email. I prefer quotable content, low res images, embeddable videos and relevant social media information.
- Via e-mail, with any relevant photos. For example, if someone has been named CEO of a company I cover, send his headshot (you don’t have to ask).
- Research has changed dramatically in the time and effort required. It does bring up the subject of reliability. We are able to reach more people with the ability to publish our work online and promote with social media.
- Due to busy schedules, digital means efficiency and speedy delivery to our audience. Anything that gets in the way of that erodes its usefulness.
- I don’t need to have all information at my fingertips anymore, but I want to know where to find it when I need it. For example, I don’t want lots of paper press kit materials, but I do want to know where to find such info online. I need to be able to get a hold of photos easily and quickly and not have to jump through hoops to figure out what usage terms they are subject to.
Learning from journalists, and other target audiences, is one way the PWR team works to improve our performance. Hope you enjoyed this peek into the minds and work habits of a key audience as much as our team. Cheers!