All the news that fits
Brand newsrooms are pushing real-time marketing—
but at what cost?
The marketing world is abuzz over the latest shiny object: brand newsrooms. Companies and agencies are falling over
themselves to assemble permanent or
pop-up newsrooms in hopes of reaping
real-time marketing gold.
Up to this point, brand newsrooms
have been mostly focused on identifying
opportunities to engage in “culture-
jacking”—timing messages to react to a
widespread cultural event—and what
author David Meerman Scott has called
“newsjacking”—leveraging a breaking or
ongoing news story to promote your own
brand. The Oreo cookie brand, for exam-
ple, made headlines with its response to
the power outage during the National
Football League Super Bowl in New
Orleans, Louisiana, in February. Shortly
after the lights went out, Oreo’s team
tweeted an ad that read, “You can still
dunk in the dark.” The ad was clever,
but it was also impressive how quickly a
large brand like Oreo had responded to
an event in real time.
Oreo’s tweet/ad made headlines when it appeared in real time
during a power outage at the Super Bowl in February.
Real-time marketing or
just puerile stunts?
While some marketers think real-time
marketing is nothing more than tweeting as soon as news breaks, other organizations are reaching for the other
extreme, building physical newsrooms
where brand representatives and their
various agencies collaborate to identify
opportunities, craft an approach to
leveraging those opportunities, develop
the assets to deploy and then deploy
them as quickly as possible, all in service
of a strike-while-hot mentality.
I have to wonder, though, about the
resources allocated to these efforts compared with the payoff, especially when
stacked up against the benefits of other
content approaches that may be
neglected in the rush to jump on the