Sunday, March 6, 2011

Brazil surrenders to the multifunctionality of the Social Media Press Release

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The following is a guest post from Brazilian public relations professional Rodrigo Capella.* Rodrigo is a lecturer and writer, he edits the blog PR Interview and has more than 20 books published.
For a long time, the traditional press release has been used in Brazil. With basic information (title, lead, quotes, boilerplate and contacts of the PR agency), this tool of communication led several news (mergers, product launches, new strategies, etc.) to the journalists.

In the first years of existence, the traditional press release was very well evaluated by professionals working in publications. It happened because the Brazilian PR Agencies always adapted the institutional information according to the journalists’ needs.

Nowadays, the contact of the journalists with this tool is wearing out quickly (most of the media professionals prefer to receive all the information together - image, video, quotes, etc). Even so, for many years, Brazil has insisted - contrary to many countries - to use the traditional press release as a primary tool of communication.

To get an idea, for more than five years, many in the United States adopted alternative tools, such as the Social Media Press Release (SMPR). Made in various formats, this platform can unite, in a single space, podcast, video-release, relevant links, tags, and RSS. There is also, of course, the elements of the traditional press release, like boilerplate and quotes, among others.

An interesting example was the SMPR “Second Life Reforestation Project Qualifies as a Finalist in American Express Members Project,” which facilitated most of the media professionals’ work. An interesting point: this platform has presented to the journalists the direct contacts of the spokesperson (a fact that, for cultural reasons, seldom occurs in Brazil).

Now, after overseeing the successful of the SMPR around the world (here's another example), Brazil has surrendered to this agile tool and already collected some interesting cases. To announce the launch of the new 3DS, the portable console that lets you play in 3D without special glasses, the PR agency S2 Publicom sent to the Brazilian press a SMPR (there’s a password and login to access this platform) with files in English and Portuguese. In this SMPR, it was possible to have access to video-releases, pictures and a variety of information about the launch.

Another interesting example was conducted by CDN in partnership with Cinnamon Communication. The PR Agencies did a SMPR to launch the new VAIO notebook Y. With video release, links, images and testimonials, the platform has brought all the necessary information for journalists reporting the product.

These two examples of SMPR (3DS and VAIO Y) confirm a trend: there is no communication without innovation. Brazil learned this lesson. Now, it needs to be aware of upcoming changes for not getting used to be outdated. 

[The reference to the Social Media Press Release (SMPR) should be understood to flow interchangeably with social media news release (SMNR) or just Social Media Release. I found Rodrigo's post particularly interesting and relevant since it points out some of the basic ways to help PR pros get a better grasp on how one can use social elements and digital assets with releases.]

* Contact Rodrigo Capella via E-mail: Twitter: @rodrigo_capella 
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