Securing media coverage at your annual meeting is an opportunity to shine the spotlight on your organization and inform key audiences about the value it brings to the industry. To generate that media coverage, you need a well-designed and well-run newsroom that provides media the resources they need to do their jobs. Here are some tips for a successful onsite newsroom at your next annual meeting:
Create a consistent flow of content
Annual meetings typically have general sessions or keynote addresses that are good sources of news, but don’t overlook the specific, topic-based and plenary sessions. You’ll benefit from having your communications team take a deep dive to uncover hidden news gems in oral and poster presentations. To promote such presentations, identify and select topics and issues that have relevance to your members, align with your strategic communications goals, and position your organization as a thought leader in the industry. These presentations can then be turned into content marketing pieces such as news releases, bylined articles and expert alerts to generate media exposure for your organization. Not only can this content be used to generate media coverage, it can also be repurposed for online content to share on your organization’s social media channels. The conversations both on and offline about the news coming from your meeting should be positive and constant during the duration of the meeting, and should showcase your organization’s expertise.
Develop an abundance of resources
Reporters in your onsite newsroom are your guests and you want to be sure they have what they need to do their jobs. Granting access to general and plenary sessions, abstracts and presentation decks will help ensure stories are complete and tell the larger story about your meeting or conference. Because your newsroom will be bustling with activity during the annual meeting, preparation of materials and resources for media should begin several months before the meeting starts.
Provide an accommodating work space
The need to provide the proper tools and equipment in your newsroom might seem obvious, but it’s often overlooked.. Your newsroom should be equipped with reliable internet access, plenty of places to plug in, quiet areas for interviews, a printer and of course, helpful members of your communications team to answer questions and direct anyone who stops in looking for something.
Whether working in your newsroom, attending a session, interviewing one of your spokespersons or exploring the exhibit hall, all reporters (and attendees!) should feel “at home” while they are likely far away from their own. As strategic counselors, content marketers and media relations specialists, we are available to discuss your annual meeting plans with you.
A version of this post originally appeared on the Custom News blog.
Marissa Ellenby is an Account Supervisor, creative digital strategist and annual meeting whisperer. She is forever in search of the best chocolate chip cookie in Chicago.