Reporters, journalists, bloggers, and other news media pros use newswires regularly, some even daily. What keeps them coming back? Much like a favorite restaurant, it’s more than just one dish that feeds a craving so what aspects of a newswire feed the cravings of the media? Business Wire, in a perpetual endeavor to strengthen relations with the media, set out to find the answer. A 2015 survey conducted on the current and future state of media with nearly 400 industry members asked for their input. The result is an insightful look into why the media uses newswires and what they’d like to see more of in order to help them better do their job.
For a news story to be interesting it needs to be comprised of relevant and timely facts, data, and supplemental information. Newswires deliver this content in real-time, offering the media a trusted source for story leads. The most sought after type of information in a press release is breaking news (75.3%) followed closely by interesting story angles (72.1%) and supporting facts (68.84%). Journalists and bloggers also look for trending industry topics (56.7%), quotable sources (50.7%) and company background information (51.2%).
Participants were asked if they would be more likely to utilize a press release if it provides multimedia elements (logos, images, audio files, video files). The results were very clear with 52.6% of responding reporters saying they would be likely to use a news release if it included some form of multimedia element. The multimedia type most often preferred is a photograph (82.8%), then graphics (48.4%), infographics (35.8%), and logos (27.4%) with video files at 38.1%. Communicators, in addition to the textual content of a news release, can also include images and videos, as well as interactive content such as news and picture capsules to aid in telling their message. For the media, a well thought out release featured on a newswire provides the assets needed to put together a news story for the public.
A release disseminated by a newswire goes through an editorial process of vetting. This is advantageous to newsrooms who increasingly find themselves in the fight to get the news out first without scarifying accuracy. Journalists know that a story picked up via a newswire is in fact verified information from a legitimate source. The newswire’s track record of delivering reliable and trustworthy content is a major reason that the role of newswires in journalism remains vital in the digital age.
A majority of respondents (84.7%) use newswire services, with 53.5% referring to newswires daily or several times a day. When asked what newswire they used the most, Business Wire came out as the top news source with 67.4% of respondents choosing Business Wire as their top commercial newswire resource. When asked if their jobs would be harder if newswire-distributed press releases were no longer made available, 62.8% said yes.
Newswires are a resource and journalists, bloggers, and other media pros continue to utilize them. Issuing this survey gives us the opportunity to learn from the media what aspects of a newswire are valued most. Newswires are a bridge between media members and the innovative companies trying to get their messages out. Understanding how to better transport that message is beneficial to all parties involved.