PR News Hijacking Isn’t Meant for Humans

PR News Hijacking Isn’t Meant for Humans

rapid_response_pitchingMost PR agencies and professionals are familiar with the practice of “news hijacking” – also known as “issues hijacking” or “rapid response pitching” – where a story breaks that’s applicable to you or your client and you jump on the news right away. The point is to offer your own commentary and insights on the situation to give journalists an expert source to quote, or a new perspective.

This is definitely a great way to show you’re up on the trends of the day, be seen as an industry thought leader and get your name in print, but is also something that marketing tech expert Chris Penn argues isn’t meant for humans.

Recently, I heard Chris Penn speak at a PRSA Boston event on PR measurement where he highlighted the need for supercomputing to really make the most out of measurement. Supercomputing gives us the ability to monitor analytics in real-time with the potential to translate findings into actionable PR or marketing insights and business decisions… and this also applies to news hijacking.

To be clear, the context of Chris’ comment that “humans aren’t meant for news hijacking” came amid the discussion of monitoring conversations happening at 1 million conversations per second… which you’ll find on the likes of Twitter during the presidential debates, for instance, where the topic may turn from one thing to the next in the blink of an eye.

In order to capitalize on such rapidly changing news or trends – likely via the same fast-paced mediums as Twitter, instead of traditional PR email pitching – it was argued that only a super computer would be able to discern the type of insights worthy of commenting or providing input on. This could also help you avoid risky topics where sentiment may turn on you, too.

While certainly applicable for dissecting fast-paced events or breaking news, especially for certain industries, how practical is the use of a super computer in every day scenarios?

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