I’ve been doing this for years now but only recently realized there is a popular term for the process – newsjacking.
So let’s take a look at the newsjacking definition and how it can help your site soar through the rankings…
What is Newsjacking?
Newsjacking is a term coined by David Meerman Scott and refers to the practice of adding your own spin to breaking news. As I mentioned above – I’ve been using this process for years now.
It’s a pretty awesome way of standing on the shoulders of other bloggers and shouting ‘Hey I’m over here!’. It works like a dream on social media as well.
You end up riding an SEO wave around the internet that lasts as long as the topic is news. I often find that other bloggers link back to my newsjacking work if I get it out there reasonably quickly.
On the odd occasion, well known media blogs with much more clout than mine have linked back to me. Such media mentions improve your SEO long after the story you covered is forgotten.
The best thing about newsjacking – it costs you absolutely nothing!
All of the news is out there floating about just waiting for a keen blogger to jump onto it and give it his/her spin.
All you have to do is come up with a clever angle and launch your content in a timely manner.
How to Newsjack
So we’ve covered the newsjacking definition – lets take a look at how to newsjack successfully…
1) The Power of Google Alerts
If you are not using Google Alerts you need to take a long hard look at your blogging campaigns – it rocks!
These alerts are free to set up and notify you whenever there news within your niche or industry. You can put as many topics as you want into the tool – regard them as keywords to your niche.
Every day afterwards the tool will spit out stories that are linked to the keywords you inputted. You will have so many alerts you will be spoiled for choice on topics. I get so many on a daily basis I end up deleting most of them as I can’t keep up!
2) Keyword Tools
Now, I usually bang on about the awesome power of the Jaaxy Keyword tool on this site but today I’m going to suggest using another ( gasp! horror! ).
Plug a load of your favorite keywords into the Google search tool ( Keyword Planner ) and see what suggested searches pop up.
You will be confronted with a list of stories and their search ratios. This will give you a good idea about what topics to cover first ( go for the most popular – obviously! ).
3) Rely on Accuracy
I know the temptation here is to get as many of these topics out as possible but please hold back a second. You must always make sure you are accurate with the information you are providing.
One little slip, one dose of misinformation and bang – you and your site lose all credibility!
With newsjacking articles I tend to forget about all the post glitz and images and concentrate on getting the article out pronto with accuracy. All that truly matters is that your content is accurate. Everything else can be added on at a later date.
4) Be Aware of Your Source
Sometimes haste leads us to make really bad decisions – don’t let your newsjacking exploits fall foul to this.
You obviously want your article out there in quick-time but you need to make sure your source is sound first. More often then not, secondary sources off social media bend the news a little to suit their needs.
This means that the source you are newsjacking is providing information for their own gain – information that you really do not want to spread.
Always seek out the primary source of the news story and then put your own spin on the report. Do not risk your reputation on secondary sources.
5) Use Your Head
Always try and remain human through the newsjacking process and pick stories that will not hurt individuals linked. I tend to make it a rule of thumb to stay away from tragedy ( there’s enough going on in the world today – why inflict more misery on your readers? ).
Think about it – do you really want your online business to be linked to any sort of tragedy?
I personally feel that this could never really help my efforts in any way and it sits a bit heavy in my stomach. I’m afraid it’s too easy to generate bad PR by capitalizing on tragic circumstances.
The Newsjacking Definition
By newsjacking you are simply looking to become a amateur news reporter yourself. This involves being ‘on call’ twenty four hours a day unfortunately!
It doesn’t matter where you are – always make a note of the topic ideas that are breaking around you and make them your priority when you return home.
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