If press releases are one of the founding tenets of traditional PR, then multimedia press releases are the wave of current development. Thanks to the explosive growth of new media, as well as the waning attention spans of information consumers, print-only releases are working harder than ever to inform and intrigue. The age-old weak points of print releases - information overload, dull headlines, key facts buried at the bottom, irrelevant news - still remain, but many of them can be put to rest by incorporating multimedia components into the original product. Here's how:
Know the lingo. Multimedia releases should contain at least some of the following (see sidebar for a complete list): live links to blogs, relevant news coverage and relevant blog posts; visuals like photos, video files or descriptive graphics; RSS feeds; and a "tagging" feature, a la Technorati or Digg. But knowing what all these things are before incorporating them is key. Many are self- explanatory, but the devil is in the details.
For example, when including executive headshots or event photographs, make sure that the resolution is at least 300 dpi: that stands for "dots per inch," and it measures printer resolution. Anything less than that is often too low-res for print publications.
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