This one’s a tad different than our usual plethora of tips and tricks. Instead of talking about how to pitch the media, we’ll delve deep into: the 3 types of media, how each type of media got started, and the advantages and disadvantages of each media type.
ICYMI: We released a comprehensive guide to media relations that dives into what it is, the difference between media relations and public relations, and tips for building a strategy around 3 basic principles.
The world is… sort of… imploding right now. Not only are we still navigating a Coronavirus-rampant country, but society itself is experiencing an incredible evolution in racial equality.
Aside from social media, the mass media is our window into everything going on right now.
With history being made all around us, and the most important presidential election in American history around the corner, let’s talk a bit about how mass media’s evolved. We’ll also answer the question: WHAT ARE THE PROS AND CONS OF EACH MEDIA-STYLE?
PRINT MEDIA | NEWSPAPERS, MAGAZINES, DIRECT MAIL AND MORE…
From magazines, newspapers, to posters, printed media has been a tried and true marketing tool for HUNDREDS of years.
TL;DR HISTORY OF PRINT MEDIA
Printed media has been around since well… as long as we’ve been printing stuff. Be it by hand or by machine.
Now, we don’t have time to dig into the actual birth of printed language, but Rinas over at Digital Co Tec Mag has an excellent article “A Brief But Bold History Of Print Media” getting into the gritty details.
We are only going over a basic outline.
It started with Johannes Gutenberg’s Printing Press in the year 1440. A machine that completely changed the world! Information and media as we know it would be nothing without the OG “JG”.
1874 would pioneer another massive technological jump in the form of the first typewriter! Never before was media so easily and quickly produced.
ADVANTAGES OF PRINT MEDIA
- Established history
Print media is still a widely trusted resource for relevant and fact-checked information. Having your story published in print can mean a reputation boost.
- People are looking for you
As found by the Readership Institute at Northwestern University, advertising is one of the BIGGEST selling points for printed media purchases. People LOVE reading magazine advertisements.
- Targeted audiences
As long as you reach out to publications that fit your industry, you’ll know only ideal audiences will be seeing your content.
DISADVANTAGES OF PRINT MEDIA
- May not be around forever
While still widely circulated, digital media makes it so easy and affordable to publish content. Hence, print media may fade away.
- Bad for the environment
Paper has detrimental impacts on the environment. In the wake of climate change and wild-fires in Australia and the Amazon, audiences are looking for greener ways of ingesting content.
- Easy to get overlooked
Since printed media is jam-packed with advertising, it can be easy for you to get lost- especially if it’s competing with more prominent brands.
BROADCAST MEDIA | TV, RADIO & PODCASTS- OH MY
Using television and radio to advertise increased the speed and scope that consumers learned about products or services.
TL;DR HISTORY OF BROADCAST MEDIA
Broadcast media (i.e., television and radio) revolutionized the accessibility of information across the world. News spread quicker than ever before- and reached even wider audiences through oral story-telling.
1906 (on a night that happened to be Christmas Eve) was when the first radio program aired, spear-headed by a guy named Reginald Aubrey Fessenden. His “experimental broadcast station” was located in Brant Rock, Massachusetts.
On November 2nd, 1920, the first commercial broadcast station (KDKA in Pittsburgh) reported the Presidential Election between Harding and Cox.
The year 1931 was when the first television broadcast became technologically possible… and we never looked back.
Learn more about HOW TV KILLED THE RADIO STAR HERE…
ADVANTAGES OF BROADCAST MEDIA
- Massive audience reach
Over 95% of US homes have televisions, and 93% of adults still listen to the radio.
- Trusted media outlets
Just like printed media, broadcast media hosts respected programs and personalities that people turn to religiously.
- Accessible to tv, computing, and mobile
Even though broadcast media centers around television and radio, most tv and radio stations have an online presence. Thanks to platforms like Netflix and Hulu, as well as podcasts, broadcast media is transient.
DISADVANTAGES OF BROADCAST MEDIA
It takes a pretty penny to secure a spot on prime-time television and radio.
- Difficult to get your foot in the door
It’s competitive and challenging to get the attention of decision-makers. It might be harder for new companies without street-cred to get featured.
- Dying medium
Broadcast media is giving way to digital media as mobile devices are more affordable and accessible.
DIGITAL MEDIA | ONLINE PUBLICATIONS, SOCIAL MEDIA & WHERE WE GO FROM HERE
The invention of the internet changed the entire world. As was the trend with its predecessors- but this time it’s all in the palm of our hand…
TL;DR HISTORY OF DIGITAL MEDIA
The World Wide Web (good ole’ “www.”) was invented in 1989 by a guy named Tim Berners-Lee.
The year 1990 delivered the first commercial dial-up service provider (known as The Word), and 1991 was when THE FIRST WEBPAGE was published. This webpage explained what the internet was!
Platforms like YouTube, MySpace, Facebook, and Google helped sky-rocket digital media into what it is today.
ADVANTAGES OF DIGITAL MEDIA
- It can only go up from here
Digital media is the way of the future. There’s no sign of slowing anytime soon.
- It’s easy to publish anything
With a plethora of easy and free platforms, you can publish stories at little to no cost.
- Targeted marketing
SEO, CRMs, and online marketing have made it easier than ever to research, identify, and target your perfect client avatar. Thanks to algorithms, your ideal audience is directed to your content by their browsing patterns.
DISADVANTAGES OF DIGITAL MEDIA
- Constantly changing but never forgetful
It’s challenging to stay ahead of technology, platforms, and trend evolutions. Not to mention, whatever you put on the internet stays there. So you have to handle PR like a hawk.
Because digital media is so easily accessible, it’s hard to build organic traffic due to over-saturation.
- Skeptical audience
Since any human can post anything on the internet, you have to jump through extra hoops to ensure your content is taken seriously. Internet users know all-too-well that you cannot trust everything you read on the web.
That was a pretty fun article, and we hope you guys think so too!
If you are a publicist, now you have some textbook info on journalism and the media. BUT … now you need to know how to apply this information and send a great pitch, right?
Not only will you glean helpful pitching tips, but we also have first-hand comments from actual journalists telling it like it is.
If you want some content of the broadcast variety, we suggest listening to THE “COFFEE WITH A JOURNALIST” PODCAST. It’s fun, it’s informative, and there’s no better pitch tutor than a professional journalist.
Thanks again for checking out this week’s article, and we’ll be back soon with more posts about… pitching.