This release explains the details of a new service being offered to companies that employ the services of CCNMatthews, a press release service that sends out info directly to CP newswire, which is where every newsroom in Canada gets the BG for most of their stories. According to the release:

Social Media distribution quickly and cost-effectively delivers news to community-driven online content forums and social media sites, such as Digg, Del.icio.us and Newsvine, giving press releases the power to become part of the dialogue within these increasingly popular and influential online communities

But here’s the thing? A typical press release will be as much a part of a “dialogue” as the outgoing message on your answering machine is part of a “conversation”. Both are static – but the OGM at least invites you to leave a message.

Rather than trying to cram an old media version of something into a new media space, effective press releases in the age of social media will actually start to look much more like this; arguably Canada’s first-ever social media release, sent out by High Road Communications and iStudio in support of something called Weblo and also like this, which is the social media release detailing Edleman PR’s introduction of storyCrafter, a “web-based tool for publishing social media news releases”. They both employ all of the elements of a social media press release as recommended by The Social Media Club and Shift Communications (the originators of the concept) – not just tags.

I’m not sure how much time and effort CCNMatthews spent on this initiative; I hope not a lot.

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3 Comments

  1. Great points, Maggie. My bugaboo with press release suppliers is their abysmal use of RSS. None of the players in Canada actually puts the full text of the release in their RSS feed (which to me seems like a no-brainer), and CCN Matthews even asks for my e-mail address before they let me view the RSS feed.

    Aren’t you folks *trying* to get people to read your releases?

  2. (Disclosure: I carry a CNW ad on my blog and have negotiated sponsorship contracts with both CNW and CCN as my role as CPRS Toronto sponsorship chair.)

    I contacted both ccn and cnw more than a year ago about how crappy their RSS feeds were. never got a response.

    Today, when i saw the CCN release, I sent an e-mail to CCN to get more info, a sample and some clarification as to what exactly their service is offering that’s different from the standard or what CNW does. I even said I wanted to blog about the service! No response.

    That paragraph you pulled confused the hell out of me. Delicious, Digg and Newsvine rely on users to tag and/or submit themselves. Adding a little button on the release is not much of a breakthrough and it doesn’t ensure that the releases are “delivered” to these sites.

    When I do hear back, I’ll post something.

  3. Email received today,though there were no answers to my questions. I’ll fill you in once I’ve had a chance to talk with CCN directly.

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