Public Relations Tactics

PR Blotter: December 2017

December 1, 2017


In a departure from its usual product previewing strategy, Apple allowed a select group of YouTube personalities and celebrity influencers to spend a week in October testing its new iPhone X, while only giving traditional outlets such as USA Today and The Washington Post 24 hours.

The participants included 12-year-old app developer Alex Knoll, who unboxed the phone and spoke with Apple CEO Tim Cook via FaceTime for a segment on “The Ellen DeGeneres Show,” actress Mindy Kaling and video bloggers from the sneaker blog Highsnobiety. Variety writer Janko Roettgers explains this new previewing scheme as an effort to tap into the communication channels of a younger consumer generation. “In the end, the move may be less about Apple picking favorable voices, and more about a shift in the power dynamics of media,” he writes.

Apple released the phone on Nov. 3, and it reportedly sold out in 20 large markets.

A recent Reuters Institute Study found that people between ages 25 and 34 are the most likely to pay for digital news, with respondents between 18 and 24 finishing at a close second. This marks a drastic change from 2016’s survey, where individuals in those age brackets were found the least likely to pay for news.

Also from the survey: 43 percent of the American consumers surveyed say their top motivating factor in paying for a news source is that it covers a particular topic of interest to them. In addition, 41 percent say they pay for a source because their friends and family also use it, while 37 percent say it’s because they were given a discount or promotion for the content.

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