How Your Brand Benefits From Newsjacking and Reactive PR

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In today’s fast-paced digital world, brands are always looking for unique and effective ways to get their message out there.

One approach that has gained popularity in recent years is newsjacking. Newsjacking, as the name suggests, involves using breaking news or viral trends to create relevant and timely content that captures the audience’s attention.

By leveraging the power of newsjacking, brands can position themselves as thought leaders and join the conversation around a trending topic, ultimately driving more visibility and engagement for their brand.

Understanding Newsjacking

In today’s fast-paced world, businesses and organizations must stay on top of the latest news and trends to connect with their audience.

One way to do this is through newsjacking, a technique that involves piggybacking on trending topics or breaking news to generate content that is relevant to the conversation.

What is Newsjacking?

Newsjacking is a marketing strategy involving creating content tied to a current event or trend. The idea is to create content that can be shared widely and quickly to take advantage of the news cycle or viral trend.

By doing so, businesses and organizations can connect with their audience by offering engaging, useful, and timely information related to the news story or trend.

Newsjacking can take many forms, including blog posts, social media posts, videos, and infographics.

The key is creating content relevant to the conversation which provides value to your audience.

The Importance of Timeliness in Newsjacking

One of the most critical aspects of newsjacking is timeliness.

You must act fast and create content while the topic is still trending or in the news cycle.

This means keeping a close eye on breaking news and emerging trends and being ready to act quickly to create relevant content.

The faster you can create and share relevant content, the more likely you are to catch your audience’s attention.

This is because people are more likely to engage with content that is timely and relevant to their interests.

Examples of Successful Newsjacking

There have been many successful examples of newsjacking in recent years.

For example, during the 2013 Super Bowl blackout, Oreo tweeted a clever ad saying, “You can still dunk in the dark.” The tweet went viral and became one of the most talked-about ads of the game.

Oreo Newsjacking Example

Another successful newsjacking example is the ALS ice bucket challenge, a viral social media trend in 2014.

ALS Newsjacking example

Many brands and organizations created versions of the challenge to raise awareness and funds for ALS research, resulting in a massive social media campaign that helped raise millions of dollars for the cause.

Newsjacking can be a powerful marketing tool when done correctly. By creating timely and relevant content, businesses and organizations can connect with their audience and take advantage of the latest news and trends.

Identifying Real-Time PR Opportunities

As a PR professional, it’s essential to always look for opportunities to promote your brand.

One way to do this is by newsjacking – piggybacking on breaking news or trending topics to gain media coverage and increase your brand’s visibility.

Here are some tips for identifying real-time digital PR or traditional PR opportunities:

Monitoring Breaking News and Trends

Keeping a close eye on breaking news and emerging trends is essential to identifying newsjacking opportunities.

This means monitoring news sources and social media for relevant stories and trending topics. You can use tools like Google Alerts, Twitter search, and social media monitoring software to stay up-to-date on breaking news.

For example, if you work for a fitness brand and there’s breaking news about a new study linking exercise to better mental health, you could quickly craft a press release or social media post highlighting your brand’s commitment to promoting physical and mental wellness.

Utilizing Social Media for Real-Time PR

Social media is a crucial tool for real-time PR and newsjacking.

By actively listening and engaging with your audience on social media, you can quickly identify newsjacking opportunities and respond in real time with relevant content.

This can help you establish your brand as a thought leader and increase your overall visibility and engagement on social media.

For instance, if you work for a tech startup and there’s a trending hashtag related to the latest Apple product launch, you could jump in on the conversation with a witty tweet or Instagram post about how your company’s product is an excellent alternative for those who don’t want to shell out big bucks for the latest Apple gadget.

Collaborating with Influencers and Journalists

Collaborating with influencers and journalists can be a powerful way to amplify your newsjacking efforts.

By working with influencers and journalists with a large following or influence in your industry, you can reach a wider audience and leverage their credibility to boost your brand’s reputation.

This can be especially effective in B2B industries, where thought leadership and credibility are essential to success.

For example, if you work for a financial services company and there’s a breaking news story about changes to tax laws, you could collaborate with a well-known financial journalist or influencer to craft a joint op-ed or social media post discussing the implications of the changes on your industry and offering expert insights.

By staying vigilant and creative in your approach to newsjacking, you can turn breaking news and trending topics into valuable PR opportunities for your brand.

Developing a Newsjacking Strategy

Newsjacking can increase brand awareness, reach new audiences, and establish thought leadership within your industry.

By leveraging breaking news and emerging trends, you can create content that resonates with your target audience and positions your brand as a relevant and timely source of information.

Establishing a Rapid Response Team

One of the key components of a successful newsjacking strategy is having a dedicated team ready to act quickly when opportunities arise.

This means establishing a rapid response team to create relevant content and respond in real time when breaking news occurs.

This team should include individuals from marketing, PR, social media, and other relevant departments.

It is essential to have a clear chain of command and established roles and responsibilities within this team.

Each team member should understand their role in the newsjacking process and be prepared to act quickly and decisively when opportunities arise.

Creating a Content Plan for Newsjacking

A content plan is essential to successfully executing a newsjacking strategy.

This plan should outline the topics and trends most relevant to your brand, as well as the types of content that will be created for each one.

This can include blog posts, social media updates, videos, and other types of content.

It is essential to have a diverse range of content formats in your newsjacking arsenal.

This will allow you to reach a wider audience and engage with them in various ways.

Your content plan should also include tone, voice, and messaging guidelines to ensure consistency across all channels.

Setting Up Alerts and Monitoring Tools

To stay on top of breaking news and emerging trends, setting up alerts and monitoring tools is essential to help you stay informed in real-time.

This can include Google Alerts, Twitter search, and social media monitoring software to monitor relevant keywords and hashtags.

Regularly reviewing and adjusting your monitoring tools is essential to ensure they capture the most relevant and timely information.

This will allow you to stay ahead of the curve and be ready to act quickly when newsjacking opportunities arise.

By following these steps and establishing a strong newsjacking strategy, you can position your brand as a relevant and timely source of information within your industry.

With the right team, content plan, and monitoring tools, you can successfully leverage breaking news and emerging trends to increase brand awareness and engage with your target audience.

Crafting Compelling Newsjacked Content

Newsjacking is a powerful way to increase your brand’s visibility and establish yourself as a thought leader in your industry.

By leveraging current events and trends, you can create content that is relevant and interesting to your audience and that helps you stand out in a crowded online space.

Writing Attention-Grabbing Headlines

The headline is the first thing your audience will see, so it is essential to make it attention-grabbing and relevant to the news story or trend you are newsjacking.

good headline should be short, catchy, and to the point.

It should convey what the article or piece of content is about and make your audience want to click through and read more.

For example, suppose you are newsjacking a story about a new technology trend. In that case, your headline might read something like “How [Your Brand] is Harnessing the Power of [New Technology Trend] to Improve [Industry/Problem].”

This headline is short, catchy, and clearly conveys what the article is about while highlighting your brand’s expertise and relevance to the topic.

Incorporating Relevant Keywords and Hashtags

Keywords and hashtags make your newsjacked content discoverable on social media and search engines.

By using relevant keywords and hashtags in your content, you can increase the visibility of your content and make it more likely to be shared by your audience.

When selecting keywords and hashtags, it is essential to choose ones that are relevant to both the news story or trend you are newsjacking and your brand and industry.

This will help ensure that the right audience sees your content and that it resonates with them.

For example, suppose you are newsjacking a story about a new sustainability trend in your industry. In that case, you might use hashtags like #sustainability, #greenbusiness, and #ecofriendly, as well as keywords related to your brand’s sustainability initiatives and values.

Balancing Newsworthiness and Brand Relevance

When newsjacking, it is essential to balance what is newsworthy and what is relevant to your brand.

Your content should be interesting and useful to your audience but also relevant to your brand’s message and values.

One way to achieve this balance is to focus on stories and trends directly related to your industry or niche.

This will help ensure that your content is newsworthy and relevant to your brand.

Additionally, you can incorporate your brand’s unique perspective and expertise into your content, which will help establish your brand as a thought leader in your industry.

For example, suppose you are newsjacking a story about a new technology trend. In that case, you might focus on how your brand is uniquely positioned to take advantage of this trend or how your brand’s perspective on the trend differs from others in your industry.

Finding the right balance between newsworthiness and brand relevance allows you to create newsjacked content that resonates with your audience, establishes your brand as a thought leader, and helps you stand out in a crowded online space.


Newsjacking and real-time PR opportunities are powerful tools for brands looking to increase their visibility and establish themselves as thought leaders.

By monitoring breaking news and emerging trends, collaborating with influencers and journalists, and crafting compelling content relevant to the conversation, brands can take advantage of these opportunities to reach a wider audience and drive more engagement for their brand.