Brand Journalism: Getting Started

  • Categories:

    Content Marketing, Public Relations

  • Date:

    April 01, 2014

Brand Journalism: Getting Started



Content Marketing, Public Relations

Yesterday, I talked about the concept of brand journalism. Now that you’re a believer in the ability of a strong story shared in the right places to build a brand, here are a few tips to help you get started.

I worked as a reporter in my former life, and like all journalists, I learned to answer the five Ws. Those questions apply to brand journalism, too:

  • Who (is your audience?)
  • What (is your story?)
  • When (should you share it?)
  • Where (should you promote it?)
  • Why (should your audience be inspired or care?)

As a brand journalist, you have to determine how to integrate your brand’s key messages. In today’s world, there are millions of places for people to get content, so you have to be strategic about how and when to share yours. You also have to consider how your brand journalism strategies are working in tandem with your news media relations, social media accounts and traditional marketing tactics. You may want to tell your story through all of those tools, or you may want your story to live in one place.

Remember the following as you work your way toward a successful brand journalism campaign:

  • Have a strategy. How do your brand journalism efforts tie into your overall plan?
  • Be able to write well; if you can’t, find someone who can.
  • Develop an editorial calendar; this will help you strategically plan your content and react to outside forces.
  • Be ready to provide content the media can use, e.g. great visuals for television and print. Consider a multimedia press room with expert bios, video clips and suggested tweets.

Great ideas and sound execution can make for a successful campaign, but there are some pitfalls to avoid:

  • Don’t share content that comes off as promotional or sales-driven; if you position yourself as an educational resource, you need to stick to that theme.
  • Don’t let your content get stale; refresh your material often and well.

Above all, make sure the information you put out there is helpful, educational and relevant. If you have a good story and share it in a way that’s inspiring and useful, people WILL care.

Have you implemented a brand journalism campaign? If so, share your experience with us in the comments below.