Saturday, October 3, 2015

The Defense of Corporate Journalism

Kelsey Miller

With the digital age changing the way people find and consume their information ever day, PR professionals and marketers must roll with the punches. This led to drastic changes of how to market products and to reach their same audiences. With people filtering out ads they don't want to see, it is harder than ever to get your message to your consumer. So...PR pros adapted. The result? Corporate journalism.

Corporate journalism has been adopted by corporations all over in an effort to reach their target consumer. In corporate journalism, organizations use content marketing and inbound marketing to help attract people to their website by using journalistic technique to make the content seem more like a news article than a marketing tool. 

People that aren't familiar with the reasoning behind corporate journalism are skeptical of the intentions business behind it. How can one trust anything a business has to say? They obviously have ulterior motives because they want to sell me something as a consumer. Arthur E. Rowse says this change in the media is "blurring news and ads and surrendering editorial independence under a business-side onslaught" in his article, The Dark Side of Corporate Journalism. With native advertising being a big part of corporate journalism, it can be difficult for the reader to distinguish a new story and a advertised post unless they are looking for a disclaimer at the bottom of the page. 

Looking it at this from a journalist's perspective or an everyday reader's perspective, this does seem a bit worrisome for the future of journalism, but everyday readers aren't thinking about traditional advertising. When learning about native advertising, content marketing and inbound marketing as a soon-to-be PR pro and everyday reader and consumer, this is a very exciting change in the industry! 

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The days that customers getting screamed at through interrupted marketing strategies like pop up ads, TV commercials are less than ever! Corporations are starting to see consumers as an audience, rather than a giant money sign. Businesses are using inbound marketing techniques and native advertising to get customers to them, not screaming out for customers to notice their product or service. AS the Quartz article explains, corporations are "...telling great stories about a company in a more intelligent way instead of simply extolling a product's merits." 

Corporate journalism is also a great way to hold big businesses more accountable for their actions. When something goes wrong within a big company, posting an article helps companies tell their hold side of a story and can control what is said about them in the articles they share, but it also helps them become more credible to their followers and consumers. It is more important than ever than businesses be the first to let their consumers know when something goes awry within the company. Being transparent through the bad times help make the good times way more credible. Corporate journalism is a great way for businesses to keep their audiences in the know.

I highly suggest all journalists as well as marketers look more into inbound marketing and even getting certified through HubSpot in their HubSpot Academy! It is a great tool to learn smart SEO and to learn more about the thinking behind the new advancements in PR and marketing. It isn't as much about being sneaky as some might perceive it. The basic premise to to help people make remarkable content based on the consumers needs before selling them anything. Who knows, it may change some minds about how they feel about corporate journalism!

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