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What is Newsjacking?

Earlier this morning, marketing author and advisor (to Eloqua, among others) David Meerman Scott published a new e-book enticingly titled, Newsjacking: How to Inject Your Ideas into a Breaking News Story and Generate Tons of Media Coverage (Wiley). The book not only lives up to its promise (that is, it creates a compelling case for a new PR concept called “newsjacking”), but it may have also redefined what a book is in the process.

First the stated topic: Newsjacking. The definition of the term is pretty much self-evident. It’s the act of redirecting the momentum from breaking news into your company’s favor by injecting a fresh perspective … in real time.what-is-newsjacking

Eyewear giant Oakley supplies an instant classic example of newsjacking. When the 33 Chilean minors emerged into the sunlight after spending 69 days underground, each donned a brand new pair of Oakley Radar sunglasses, resulting in press coverage that analysts value at over $40 million. News, jacked.


It’s PR judo.

In many ways, Newsjacking is the distillation of the concepts David laid out in his previous Wiley bestseller Real-Time Marketing & PR.  But there is something different about this book, something that separates it from all other business books. It’s singularly focused (translation: no filler). It’s brisk (you can read it in less than an hour). It’s stuffed with examples (from Rick Perry to Larry Flynt, from Oakley to Eloqua, from the London Fire Brigade to Wynn Resorts). And, most importantly, it’s practical (it’s a structured as a how-to manual). how-to-newsjack-a-story

The book is like a treasure map leading PR people to a massive bounty of media coverage. If Apple’s Siri were to dictate a PR book, it would sound a lot like Newsjacking.

The uniqueness of Newsjacking doesn’t end with the pace or substance. The style (it’s delivered in a digital-only format – that’s right, not a single tree was, well, jacked in the making of this book) is similarly novel.  The format allows David to link to supplemental information to augment his key points. It also allowed him to bring this book to market quickly, very quickly.

How quickly? Well, fast enough to coincide with Amazon’s launch of its Kindle Fire color e-book reader. Seems like David didn’t only write the book on newsjacking, he also read it.

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