Press release timing is everything

By Seamus Byrne in Media News on
When is the best time to send a press release? After all the draft work, the revisions, the client expectation management, the push to meet the deadline, the moment arrives. Time to hit send. But when are you sending it? What else is happening that could capture the attention of the recipients at this critical moment? Send at the wrong time and it's buried in an inbox, lost to the bits of time.
 
There is no simple answer to this question, of course. The question reminds me of the old saying in advertising that half your budget is wasted but you'll never know which half.
 
So when is the right time to send a press release? There are good ballpark windows of time, and good times to avoid.
  • Don't send after hours.
  • Don't send on a weekend.
  • Don't send on a Friday afternoon.
  • Don't send very first thing on a Monday... but a little later on Mondays are good in Australia because it's still Sunday in the US so no big overnight news is likely to be demanding a local follow up.
There are a few angles to keep in mind. But the 'right time'? There are always too many variables to throw spanners into the path.
 
Yesterday was 'iPhone day', and over the years it has become notorious as the time sink for journalists where they just have to spend the morning covering what was announced. The traffic has always been an easy win for outlets. For all the vocal haters, there's a big, big majority who want to read the details of what was announced from their preferred media outlet.
 
A quick look through my inbox suggests a lot of PR might have an avoidance strategy around iPhone day. Which actually means that, once the iPhone coverage is done, there's actually not much else on the agenda to cover that's brand spanking new.
 
Does this mean there's an opportunity to stop worrying and learn to launch anyway? It depends on who you're chasing. For breakfast TV there's probably only one tech slot on any given day, so you're unlikely to push Apple out of the way for that one. But for volume digital outlets it might be a good day to offer up the "here's something other than the iPhone" news to cover.
 
The flip side to this is that today's inbox might end up overloaded if too many companies decided to hold off for a day to push out their news the day AFTER. Which means you're not just competing with one big product but now a storm of other press releases about umpteen other products and services.
 
There's a lottery vibe lurking beneath it all. But you need to know which draw to buy the tickets in to give yourself the best chance of a win. Maybe you targeted the wrong people. Maybe the news just wasn't all that newsworthy. Maybe your news arrived at the wrong time.
 
In some ways a fixed timing for a launch saves the hassle of wondering if you got it right. At least you know you sent it exactly when it had to be sent.
 
For the rest? Build a plan, think about the wider environment of the day, imagine what a journalist's inbox might look like based on the time, the day, and the wider industry news cycle.
 
Then schedule your release and cross your fingers.

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Print IT! Magazines for late October 2020

By Seamus Byrne in Media News on
Plenty more mags across the industry hit stands in recent weeks, channel to enthusiast, industry to consumer. Plus the digital videocamera magazine makes a return appearance.
Sound + Image
Like the hardcore audio nerds they are, Sound + Image has gone big with vinyl in its latest issue. With turntables from hundreds to tens of thousands, “something for everyone” rarely fits better (as long as ‘everyone’ wants to dive back into sweet analogue warmth, of course). The rundown also includes a review of a vinyl cleaning system to get the best out of those discs. Jez Ford’s editor letter, delving into the difference between ‘audio’ and ‘hi-fi’ was a great introduction to such a deep dive into the state of turntables, too. Plus we get a rundown of the CEDIA 2020 finalists, with some truly gorgeous smart home and home cinema installations to show off in a perfect year for anyone who’s ever wanted to trick out their home in style. Lo

Schofield kicks off Hit 92.9 breakfast

By Jonas Lopez in Media News on

Will Schofield is entering the breakfast booth at Hit 92.9, on 1 November.

Radio Today reported that the former West Coast Eagles AFL player agreed to go on the air alongside Juelz Jarry and Pete Curulli, as their current partner, Xavier Ellis, is out on two weeks’ paternity leave. 

Schofield, who has been working with Hit since 2017, said going on the breakfast circuit was okay since he’s leaving the footy oval for good.

“I retired from the AFL this year. I’ve been waiting on the bench for a spot on radio. I’m coming off the bench. And just like my AFL career, I’ll be dropped in about two weeks. Xav’s shoes are big ones to fill – even bigger than the grooves in his chair,” said Schofield.

De Brito prepares exit

By Jonas Lopez in Media News on

Kate de Brito is leaving the News.com.au editor-in-chief post at the end of the year.

News Corp Australasia executive chairman Michael Miller said De Brito is making way for new leadership after a nearly five-year run at the top. She succeeded Daniel Sankey back in 2016.

“Under Kate’s leadership, news.com.au has grown into a fast-moving, driving force in the Australian news landscape. I thank and congratulate Kate on her contribution and the news.com.au team for their extraordinary energy and focus,” said Miller.

In addition to leaving the top role at News.com.au, De Brito will also vacate a similar seat at Kidspot, with editor Mel Wilson at the helm.

The people's needs

By David Hague in Media News on
After spending months behind the counter at Jaycar, Australian Videocamera's David Hague thinks he's found a disconnect between Australia's tech media and what people really want. You can grab the latest issue of David's latest edition of Australian Videocamera here.

I thought a lot before writing this article. In reality, I understand it might greatly alienate me from my peers (more than I probably already am anyway), but I think it bears a few points worth telling.

And that is a risk I’ll take.

It needs a few hundred words as a preamble though.

For those that don’t know me, I have been freelance writing tech for newspapers, magazines and websites since 1986 and only went solo with my own magazine, Australian Videocamera, through circumstances I will not go into, since 2007.

From 1994-1995 I worked for Computer Television in Perth as a writer and director of video training, publishing video-based series (on tape) for Microsoft (Office, Windows), Apple (

5 Minutes with Shaun Prescott

By Seamus Byrne in Media News on
Shaun Prescott wears a few hats around Sydney’s Future Publishing offices, typically while holding a game controller (or keyboard and mouse). But don’t check if he’s on Twitter. Here’s his 5 Minutes.
 
What do you do and where does your work appear?
I'm an Australian editor for PC Gamer. I also write for APC, occasionally Techradar and Gamesradar, and work on the Official PlayStation magazine.
 
Anything else in your career you’ve been known for?
Just writing. 
 
What did you really want to be when you were growing up?
I mainly wanted to write. I also wanted to be a person living in the future.
 
Which story or stories are you most proud of?
I don't really feel proud. I feel satisfied sometimes. 
 
What are three top tips you can give PR pros for working with you effectively?
I'm not in a position to give advice to PR pros - they know their job better than I do. I get a lot of PR material, both from

Rieger to lead 4BC news

By Jonas Lopez in Media News on

Chris Rieger has signed up as 4BC’s new news director, reported Radiotoday.

His appointment came after two months of newsreading on Breakfast with Neil Breen.

Rieger’s experience in radio includes stints with, among others, 4KQ, KRock, and The River.

“I love being back in Brisbane and doing what I love again, but most importantly, I work with some really cool people, some who I’ve known for years from other radio stations and my last stint here at Magic882 (4BH),” said Rieger.

Stephenson returns to work

By Jonas Lopez in Media News on

Alison Stephenson has come back from maternity leave as arts and lifestyle editor for News Prestige Community titles The Wentworth Courier, Mosman Daily and North Shore Times.

The interim person on the post, Kelly Baker, is staying on as a contributor.

Follow Stephenson on Twitter @Ali_Stephenson.

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