Newsjacking: How To Stay Relevant Amongst Your Competitors

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.”

Using PR Coverage to Speak to B2B SaaS Buyers

Let’s say we’re pre-COVID-19, and we’re at a cocktail party. We’re in a group of five people of different genders and ages. I’m telling a story and I’m trying to explain TikTok.

Some of the people I’m talking to will already know what TikTok is. Some will need me to explain it. Let’s say the conversation turns to 8-tracks. Some people will instantly know what they are and some will need an explanation.

TikTok and 8-tracks aside, this example shows just how important it is to consider your audience. This guiding principle applies to PR for SaaS companies. Unlike trying to sell a pair of headphones or a sleeping bag, SaaS audiences are quite diverse. After all, a SaaS app has not one but at least three buyers: users, influencers and decision-makers. 

The great thing about PR coverage is that it can be used in SaaS sales to speak to each buyer, addressing different pain points for each and taking a different approach based on where they are in the purchase stage. 

Prospects and current customers

Your prospects and current customers are your users. They’re looking to be educated about tactical execution to be better at their jobs. This could come in the form of best practices, customer stories or new techniques. Trade media is the best avenue for this content. Not only will this type of content help target buyers do better work, but it also helps SaaS companies demonstrate tactical expertise in a target vertical.

Trade media is also a target for company-focused news like executive hires, integrations and product announcements. Prospective and current customers are more likely to be invested in this type of news, whereas national press would think those announcements are too in the weeds.

Finally, trade coverage is an excellent resource for SaaS sales reps to use in touchpoints for prospects. This type of coverage, especially something like a case study with ROI metrics, can show a prospective customer exactly how a solution can be harnessed for optimal performance, pushing them further into the sales cycle.


Influencers in the SaaS sales process are those that influence the purchase but, aren’t the end-user of the platform. Let’s say you’re trying to implement a CDP. You’ll definitely need buy-in from the IT department. If you’re implementing a GRC platform for GDPR compliance, you’ll need buy-in from the marketing department.

It’s vital for these tangential buyers to have some sort of content dedicated to them so they feel incorporated in the decision-making process. Content for them can appear in their department trade vertical (marketing, IT, compliance) to meet them where they are. This way, they have more information about how a potential solution may work for them, too.


Your decision-makers aren’t in the nitty-gritty like a SaaS user ( though there are occasional exceptions). They need to know the value a solution could deliver to the organization — and brand notoriety won’t hurt either. There are a couple of ways this can manifest in media coverage. 

First, through customer stories. Yes, I mentioned this previously in the section about prospects and customers. But, through a decision-maker’s lens, customer stories can prove just how impactful a certain solution can be. Take this example of Moogsoft’s impact at Fannie Mae. Because the article is in a top-tier business publication, a more diverse audience is reading it than those who might be reading, say, DevPro Journal. This builds the brand’s credibility outside of trade verticals, legitimizing it to various departments.

Second, other coverage in top-tier outlets builds the brand’s credibility outside of what the solution actually does. Perhaps you’ve heard of the company Moz, but you don’t know exactly what it does. Because you’ve heard of Moz, though, you might be more inclined to pay for their solution over a competitor, simply because of brand recognition. Coverage contributing to this can span a wide range of topics including civil issues, leadership strategies, commentary about the software market and more.

As you can see, there’s always a way to reach any buyer in the SaaS sales process with media coverage. If you’re looking for more information about how to help your organization do this and more, contact Lindsey Groepper.