It’s the sister of native advertising.
The difference between the two forms of communications comes down to cost.
Unlike native advertising, the media placement for native PR is free.
Shifting from theory to reality, check out how this plays out on what’s called the BuzzFeed Community:
What a great platform for communicators to hone their storytelling with low risk (again, no cost for the media placement).
Of course, the BuzzFeed Community doesn’t deliver the right audience for, say, the semiconductor industry (though I bet Brian Fuller and his experience at EE Times could find an angle for an EDA company). On the other hand, it’s a natural for campaigns that aspire to touch the masses.
Lest you think every post must incorporate a cat video or some type of farm animal, our Endicia team (online shipping) created “6 More Bizarre Businesses That You Didn’t Know Existed,” a riff on a Mashable story on the same topic.
I had no idea a company specialized in waterproof bibles (for those snorkelers looking for Genesis 1:26?).
The principles of a meritocracy govern the BuzzFeed Community; i.e., the more compelling/amusing/fresh your story, the greater the reach.
Lili Salzberg, the BuzzFeed community moderator, was good enough to pass a few of the more popular Community posts my way. I particularly enjoyed: “Dad Draws on Kids’ Sandwich Bags, Makes Your Mom’s “I love you!” Notes even Less Cool”
My Dad managed a jewelry store. I was thinking what a nice touch it would have been if he had included a gram of gold with my peanut butter sandwich during my grade school days.
Lili also highlighted the post “10 More Helpful Tips To Make Your BuzzFeed Posts Stand Out” to guide your efforts.
With the BuzzFeed Community pioneering “native PR,” it’s only a matter of time before other media properties follow suit – a good thing for communicators.
This type of platform presents an ideal way for the PR profession to accelerate the transition to writing directly for the target audience.
Note: I often write about BuzzFeed and its form “extreme storytelling.” Recent posts include “The Wall Street Journal Tries BuzzFeed Storytelling” and my favorite, “BuzzFeed Meets White House.”