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September 20, 2012

PR Lessons from USA Today’s Makeover

USA Today press logo

Thirty years ago USA Today revolutionized the newspaper business with a splashy layout of national content aimed at U.S. travelers. It was designed as a national newspaper for the television age. Last week the newspaper unveiled its latest overhaul—a rebirth for the digital age. The paper’s new look is straight from the Web, modern and interactive. Its digital platforms (website, tablet and mobile apps) sport new looks too, with bigger images and more graphic-driven stories.

So yes, if you’re pitching USA Today you definitely should study the redesign to make sure your brand’s pitch fits in. But we also think USA Today’s face-lift offers some pointers for pitching any media outlet today. Because maybe like USA Today, the look and feel of your standard press release needs a face-lift too.

  • Get Interactive: USA Today added more space for Facebook and Twitter comments. Is your brand giving customers a real voice on social channels?
  • Go multi-media: USA Today is pushing live video coverage. Can your brand add compelling video to its campaign?
  • Add more graphics and photos: Can you make your pitch more visual?
  • Reevaluate the typeface: USA Today’s new typeface is cleaner. Is yours?
  • Keep what truly works: USA Today Snapshots made the pie chart famous, and the overhaul honors that by keeping the Snapshot virtually unchanged. When looking for new ways to dazzle the media, stay true to your brand’s roots.