You consume news whether you want to or not. It’s everywhere — on-air, online, on social media, and in day-to-day conversations. For PR professionals, the quantity of news is all-consuming and constantly changing, making it easy to get lost amidst the noise.
Producing relevant, interesting and newsworthy content can be challenging, but every now and then there’s a perfect storm of current events or industry trends that relate to a client’s expertise. When these opportunities arise, pushing your client into the limelight and effectively capturing media attention counts as successful newsjacking. But what if you had the same mindset when seeking competitor news?
Proactively looking for upcoming announcements by monitoring competitors’ social media and blog posts gives you the opportunity to offer your own reactions and is a great way to gain coverage.
Here are three tips on how you can use competitor newsjacking to your advantage.
1. Consistent Competitor Monitoring
Let’s be real: your competitors are going to have news. Scout the competition by keeping an eye on their updates through Google Alerts, social media channels, company blogs or daily searches. That way, when you see the news post or catch wind of an upcoming announcement, you’re ready to take action.
2. Touch Base With Your CEOs
Before a competitor’s news goes live, clue in your CEO to gain perspective on the impact this news could have on your existing customers and marketplace overall. Use this as an opportunity to work with a thought leader in your company and develop a statement, offering insight into how these competitor developments will impact customers, upcoming trends and the industry overall. Keep in mind, a CEO’s statement can be challenging to pin down in a timely manner. If you sense you’ll face this issue, identify an alternative thought leader, potentially another member of the C-Suite or a managing director.
3. Have a Plan in Place
Competitor newsjacking requires speed — you might not hear about your competition’s news until the day it goes live. Be aware of this and have a strategy in place because it’s crucial to share your content while the story is still developing. Take some time to create a communications plan tied to a competitor newsjacking opportunity. Ask yourself, who will lead the effort? What are the responsibilities of PR, marketing, digital and social media executives? Gather what the possible “creatives” behind the message will be and develop them as soon as possible.
Riding the coattails of not only the media’s biggest stories but also competitor news can produce massive benefits for your company. For advice on keeping up with reactive opportunities, check out “The Reactive PR Playbook for SaaS Brands.”