Media relations, ugh. So old-school and boring. We're all about digital now. And Snapchat is just for the kids, right?
This week, ESPN announced that it's launching its flagship TV show with a special Snapchat edition, joining CNN, NBC, The Economist, and more traditional media brands on the platform.
While such news could be regarded as these companies trying to get down with the kids and jumping on the bandwagon of what's hot right now (although you could argue that Snapchat is no longer the hot new kid on the block now other networks like Musical.ly and tbh are getting such attention). But it's important to point out that it's working for media companies.
A recent essay from The Economist highlighted that an average of 7.1M users visit The Economist's Snapchat channel every month. In fact, their most popular Snapchat edition reached more readers in 1 week than its website does in a month!
And looking at it from a PR perspective, what brands don't want their news story reach over 7M+ people with the halo effect of being discussed by a trusted media source like The Economist? Or having a product showcased by Mashable or Apartment Therapy in a live demo?
So, why as a brand having your own Snapchat platform may be a step too far right now (although if you want to reach a discerning group of young consumers, I'd urge you to reconsider but that's a conversation for another day), you should DEFINITELY be thinking about how you can work with media to get your stories onto their Snapchat channels.
And that's not too different from probably what you're already comfortable doing but consider boring. Old-school media relations. And so some of most important things to remember when doing this applies even for Snapchat:
1. Know and build relationships with the reporters who look after Snapchat channels and shows
2. Tap into breaking news and trends to offer your client's viewpoint but (and I apologize now) keep it Snappy
3. Paint a picture. Words alone don't cut it any more, you need to show how this can come to life visually.
While Snap may argue against this, I'll sum up by saying that the simplest way of thinking about this is that Snapchat = TV for Millennials and younger. So if you're not getting featured in Snapchat stories already, why not?
Overall, launching on Snapchat has resulted in “the biggest step-change in the audience of The Economist since 1843,” says Tom Standage, deputy editor and head of digital strategy.