July 9, 2012
How Following the Strategies of the Top 20 Entertainment Feature Stories of 2011 Can Help You Score Blockbuster Media Coverage
Dorothy York, President and CEO of North American Precis Syndicate (NAPS)
Every year North American Precis Syndicate (NAPS) ranks the top Entertainment Section stories by highest number of placements in media outlets nationwide. The articles that editors preferred this year came from a variety of companies including entertainment giants such as Disney/Pixar, Warner Brothers and Paramount Pictures, electronics manufacturers such as Mitsubishi home theater equipment and Canon cameras, electronic video game manufacturers, TV networks, Nestle Foods, Yamaha Watercraft and a whole bunch of others. The articles targeted a variety of consumer groups, including families, parents, teens, empty nesters, veterans and the general public. What are the "star" qualities that these stories have—that you can use to skyrocket results for your next media relations campaigns?
Many of the most successful stories are filled with helpful advice from experts, the latest statistics, results from surveys, money-saving ideas and other helpful information for people looking for entertaining ideas for an active lifestyle. The most popular topics included movies, TV shows, 3-D technology, sports, DIY family projects, national parks, digital music and games.
Each of the stories was sent with captivating color photos and graphics to more than 10,000 newspapers and thousands of online publications nationwide in a variety of formats including CDs, camera-ready repro proofs, RSS feeds by subject, e-mails, NAPS social media sites and blogs. Several included broadcast media outlet distributions on a variety of tape and CD formats to more than 6,500 radio stations and over 1,000 TV stations, which gave the stories hundreds of additional on-air placements.
Here are the top 20 examples of the Entertainment Section stories for 2011 that were most popular with editors, and what made these so successful:
Pointers For Parents/How Not To Raise A Bully—This article targeted a diverse audience and included helpful tips for parents from a psychologist about the early years of life and development of empathy. This article got 1,312 placements in 33 different states with a readership of nearly 125 million. Not only did this feature story receive placement in 53% percent of the top 50 markets, but it appeared in nine out of the top 10 markets. Additionally 34% of the placements were in the second 50 markets.
Digital Entertainment Group 3DHQ
Add A New "Dimension" To Movies At Home—This article highlighted the latest developments in 3-D technology for the home. The article benefited by using a photo of kids looking mesmerized while watching TV with special viewing glasses, mouths wide open with excitement.
Cable & Telecom Association For Marketing (CTAM)
Filling An Empty Nest With Entertainment—This article creates an awareness of a digital cable service, Movies On Demand, and has a wide selection of big names and titles in the movie industry for prospective viewers.
Consumers Want Bigger And Better TVs—This article about new TVs with optimal 3-D viewing capabilities, includes a color drawing of a robot (provided by a NAPS artist) emerging from the TV right into the living room of the viewers who are getting the big picture at affordable prices, as revealed in the article, which drives traffic to the social media sites of the manufacturer.
Fun Family Project—This DIY article gives a step-by-step plan for parents and kids to build jumbo goal post uprights for a football game the whole family can enjoy.
Helping Your Little Ones Discover The Big World—A child care and development expert was quoted throughout this article that mentions the latest collection of Discovery Kits that help babies make connections with what they see and hear on screen and what they experience in real life while introducing classical music, nature and the arts in playful and interactive ways.
National Parks—A Fun, Budget-Friendly Activity—This article suggests that an entertaining way to get out and experience nature while promoting an active, healthier lifestyle with your family is to visit a national park. It continues with a tie-in of the new "Yogi Bear" DVD as a great way to show your family all the fun the parks have to offer.
Photographing Happy Memories Can Be A Snap—This informative article about the features and capabilities of today's point-and-shoot cameras is highlighted by a drawing by the NAPS artist of a person experimenting with camera settings to take pictures of people at a party. The article is filled with clever, humorous puns from NAPS writers, to keep the story light and easy to read. It closes by directing the audience to a website for more helpful information.
Embrace Summer: Cool Things To Do In The Warmer Months—This article offers tips on plenty of fun summer activities for families and includes a captivating photo of teenagers enjoying themselves on the waterfront. As the caption suggests, they are creating memories by sharing a special frozen snack with loved ones. Special coupons and promotions are offered to Facebook fans.
Three Tips For Getting The Best Sound Quality For Your Digital Music Files—This article gives helpful tips on how to make your digital music sound better, including information about the SRS iWOW 3D audio enhancement adaptor to help people get the most out of digital music files.
Exploring Science With Kids—This article provides tips for parents and creates an awareness of "Peep and the Big Wide World," an animated program that teaches science to preschoolers. Readers are driven to the website for the Anywhere Science and Math Activities and a bilingual Explorer's Guide designed to turn everyday situations into explorations.
Reinventing The Neighborhood Video Store—This article creates awareness that a well-known home-entertainment brand is reinventing the movie-night rental experience with retail kiosks where you can find the movies you're looking for, including recent releases, in supermarkets and convenience stores.
Protecting Your Hearing—This article alerts readers to the dangers of loud music and gives tips to prevent hearing loss. Expert advice and compelling statistics from a reliable source help promote credibility and attract attention. The story includes information about Web-based learning materials and an opportunity for kids to host a community event and teach their families about hearing protection.
Lego Master Builders
Play Well And Live Well For Years To Come—This article includes the results of recent research. An expert is quoted as saying that giving kids access to toys and games that respect their imagination and intelligence, fosters their abilities from an early age. The new Master Builders Academy program is introduced to teach kids the techniques of model designers via a yearlong toy subscription.
Cable & Telecommunications Association For Marketing (CTAM)
Tips For Getting The Most Out Of Summer's "Guilt-Tech" Pleasures—This article informs readers how to have fun in the comfort of their own homes at their fingertips with the cable remote. Tips are given on how to stay cool, save money and use some of the technology you already have in your home during the hazy days of summer.
Yamaha Motor Corporation
Summer Fever Pandemic To Follow Frigid Winter—This article draws in readers with a photo of a couple jetting across the water on a Yamaha VX Cruiser with a caption indicating that it is the industry's top-selling personal watercraft. Visitor traffic on the company's social media sites was buzzing with activity and at an all-time high. Reliability, fuel efficiency and daily cost of operation were credited with the success of the brand.
Kid-Friendly Tips For Making Friends And Being True To Yourself—This article provides pointers to parents for teaching kids to value themselves and, in turn, find value in others to help establish friendships. The "Cars 2" DVD is promoted as a story about characters who tackle honest challenges in friendship with loads of humor.
Help Cheer Up A Hero—This article about the AMVETS Task Force DVD program urges readers to donate new or good-quality used DVDs to help each base have hundreds of titles in rotation for American troops overseas.
Raising Water-Wise Kids—This article is about teaching kids to appreciate conservation of water after watching the DVD of "Rango," a story about a chameleon who wants to be a hero in a dusty Western town. The bullets for tips on how to save water are little blue raindrops.
Electronic Arts Inc.
Tips to Get Ready For a New Pet—This article presents pointers on preparing for pet adoption with the help of "The Sims 3 Pets," which is a game that lets players determine their online pets' personalities. The article also describes the tax benefits of sponsoring a pet and urges people to donate to a nonprofit organization such as the World Wildlife Fund.
Ingredients of Successful Campaigns
As Dan Rather said at a recent PRSA event, the best PR is that which provides a public service of some kind. Editors like to choose articles that will help many people and win the favor of their readers.
At a recent Mashable conference, Steve Rubel, EVP Global Strategy and Insights at Edelman, said that the best social media programs are those that are supported by media relations. Many of the top entertainment stories have been successful in driving traffic from community newspapers and news sites to social media platforms of the brands mentioned.
In the words of Warren Buffett, who was quoted recently in many major news outlets just after he acquired 63 newspapers from Media General, "In towns and cities where there is a strong sense of community, there is no more important institution than the local paper." People read community newspapers to keep track of local entertainment and other local news that they can't find in major daily newspapers. Many community news media outlets have gone hyper-local and the uniqueness of their news is what keeps those strong. As always, they welcome features that are wonderfully written and trust NAPS to send them quality material because of the relationships we've built for more than 55 years.
The Newspaper Association of America reported that according to a recent Scarborough study, 41% of people ages 18 to 34, in the New York market, read newspapers daily. Many of the top entertainment stories target people in that age range, especially families with young children.
NAPS offers copy and layout suggestions at no cost or obligation. For more information or a free proposal from the experts, please visit www.napsinfo.com, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or call (800) 222-5551.
North American Precis Syndicate (NAPS) is a service that distributes publicity in a variety of formats to 10,000+ newspapers, thousands of online publications, 6,500+ radio stations and 1,000+ TV stations nationwide. Formats include CDs, camera-ready repro proofs, postings on www.napsnet.com as downloadable files for editors with RSS feeds by subject, e-mails, Twitter feeds @NAPSnews, Facebook posts, social media, blogs, tapes, the NAPS YouTube Channel, podcasting via iTunes and more. Expected results are 100 to 400 placements in print, 400+ placements in online publications with each print release, 300+ on-air placements for each Radio Feature Release and 100+ on-air placements for each Video Feature Release. NAPS guarantees complete satisfaction with each release or another one free! For information or a free proposal, e-mail email@example.com, call (800) 222-5551 or visit www.napsinfo.com.