Content marketing is like social media—it's got power and reach across all digital realms, and it's tailor made for the skills and inclinations of PR pros. Allison Steinberg, senior media analyst at JetBlue and a speaker at PR News’ Nov. 30 Media Relations Conference in Washington, D.C., helps manage the creation and distribution of the airline's social content, and she is well aware of the social value of a good story. In the following Q&A she discusses JetBlue's content strategy and offers a preview of her presentation at the Media Relations Conference.
PR News: What is JetBlue's overall strategy and goals when it comes to content creation?
Allison Steinberg: JetBlue has a loyal audience, one that is tech-savvy and very much engaged. We understand the importance of creating and disseminating content that is timely, relevant and interesting. We look at everything through the lens of, “Is this of value to our customers?” If the answer is “no, not really,” we don’t publish it.
PR News: How does content creation mesh with a media relations strategy?
Steinberg: There’s a natural alliance between content creation and public relations. Journalism, after all, is storytelling; and content creation—whether an image, a quote, an infographic or a blog post—contains a story that the brand should keep top of mind when thinking about what messages to push.
A journalist likes a good story, in particular, one that is new and interesting, and offers more than the average press release might. It’s a mutually beneficial endeavor.
PR News: Why should brands do more than just repackage press releases and older information as new content?
Steinberg: The press release covers the five W’s—the who, what, when, where and why—and leaves little room for the nuances, context and informalities that brands have the freedom to express (and that journalists love) in blogs or via other social properties.
When you issue a press release or another formal announcement, central to that communications plan should be additional, creative social content that can help amplify that news.
PR News: Who should be involved with story mining and content creation in organizations?
Steinberg: As many diverse and creative voices as possible without slowing down the approval process. We have a small team that traverses communications, marketing and customer service, which allows us to think holistically and collaboratively about what content we’re pushing, but with the ability to executive quickly.
PR News: What’s one concept/idea you want to share with Media Relations Conference attendees?
Steinberg: Storytelling is infinitely important. Facts and figures are significant and necessary, but a good human-interest story is indelible. It’s increasingly important for brands to tell the stories that represent their values and services to earn hearts and minds. Otherwise, someone else will.
Follow Allison Steinberg: @JetBlue
To learn more from communications pros like Allison Steinberg, register to attend PR News’ Nov. 30 Media Relations Conference in Washington, D.C.