The need for a social media release as a form of online information and messaging that complements the classic press release results for SMR advocates from some fundamental changes in the information, communication and media delivery behavior of the relevant reference groups and the changed ones Media conditions on the Internet.

The classic press release in the pre-internet era

Before the Internet, companies, organizations, associations and agencies used the classic press release to share news and information with relevant audiences and the general public. The press release was sent to journalists so that they could disseminate the information through their respective specialist and mass media to the relevant target groups and / or the general public.

The changes through the internet

The Internet has radically changed the classical way of news and information dissemination:

  • The dwindling influence of the mass media
  • Journalists and mass media are increasingly losing their gatekeeper function in the age of the Internet.
  • This is partly because the Internet users themselves access the relevant information and content through search engines such as GOOGLE, GOOGLE NEWS or TECHNORATI

On the other hand, the emergence of the Web theoretically every Internet user himself to a producer of online content and thus become a multiplier. These user-generated content is becoming increasingly important. Not only because they compete with journalistic products for the best seats on search engine results, but also because they are often accepted by users as authentically more credible sources.6 In addition, the networked, user-generated content and platforms of the Social Webs7 ensure that content
and to disseminate information online beyond journalistic mass media worldwide, reaching not only specialized, interested reference groups, but sometimes also a broad public. In addition, the contents remain searchable online and generate many more contacts over time.

Digital journalism

Journalistic online products have become more and more multimedia offerings in recent years, in which the text is supplemented by images, graphics, animations, videos and audio contributions. In order to make this multimedia material available to a large number of journalists for their online contributions quickly, optimally and subject-specific, the classic press release has so far offered few opportunities.

The company as a sender

Among other things, the new opportunities offered by the Internet for communication enable companies to bypass the traditional mass media and establish direct contact and dialogue with their peers and the general public. Information, news and content can be prepared and placed online by companies in such a way that they directly reach the relevant reference groups.

The basic ideas behind the social media release

“The social media release is a catalyst for sharing news, information and content, and thus inspire conversations, but also creating a forum to discuss how to improve press releases in general.”

The press release in the internet age

It can be deduced from the described changes in the information and media reception conditions on the Internet that the online use of a classic press release as the primary means of information, both in terms of content and form, as well as in terms of the classic distribution channel, no longer the most effective and efficient Type of online information brokerage is.
First, the changes to press releases mean that once they are made available online on the corporate website or sent through online press services such as OTS, BUSINESSWIRE or PR NEWSWIRE, they will no longer reach just journalists, but theoretically all online referrals. Todd Defren and Brian Solis write in a joint article: “These means that press releases, regardless of format, are now equally important to bloggers, journalists, analysts, and now, customers too!”

In the US, press services like BUSINESSWIRE even advertise that their service provides a press release directly to YAHOO and GOOGLE NEWS, as well as relevant news aggregation sites9 such as Yahoo! Place TECHMEME.COM and reach the end consumers and bypass the journalistic online media. A development that brings Brian Solis to the conclusion that on the Internet, the publication of various press releases

which, depending on the target group (eg journalists, bloggers or end users), should be individually designed and distributed in terms of content and form: “The disruption of the Web has splintered press releases into a variety of formats : Traditional releases for media, SEO (search engine optimized) releases for customers, and social media releases for press, bloggers, and so on customers. ” )