Best Online Newsroom

Baylor Health makes a big push to attract media with a new online newsroom

The new online newsroom home page for Baylor Health Care System shows how serious Baylor Health is about attracting journalists to itself as the source for local and regional health news.

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Baylor Health Care System and its PR agency, Wieck Media, take top honors in the Best Online Newsroom category of Ragan’s Health Care PR and Marketing Awards for 2012.

Ashley Howland, who works in public relations for BHCS, says that her employer’s new online newsroom is “a state-of-the-art tool for journalists [that will] enhance and increase media coverage of Baylor Health Care.”

A list of the new features of the revamped online media room confirms that BHCS and Wieck Media are going after increased media coverage with almost every social media tool in the health communications arsenal:

  • Navigation is based on the two most logical categories: content type and subject matter
  • A basket feature lets journalists gather information, then download it all at once
  • Enhanced video tools include a clip option that lets users select a part of any video
  • Enhanced image abilities allow downloading in multiple sizes, sharing, and emailing
  • Social media integration is incorporated for Facebook likes, tweets, and content-sharing (image-embed tags, video-embed tags, and email)
  • Multitype content display on search and navigation lets journalists view all types of content about their subject on a single screen
  • An embargoed-content function allows BHCS to share sensitive material with selected journalists
  • Mailer management lets BHCS alert journalists or groups to new content
  • RSS allows journalists to see content in their RSS readers as it is published to the site
  • Hidden “dark sites”—backup media sites holding content on crises such as floods, fires, and tornadoes—are each stocked with content about one kind of crisis

There are some impressive post-revamp statistics to go along with these new features, too:

  • Almost 300,000 total page views in the year since the remade newsroom was launched
  • More than 153,000 unique site visitors from 130 countries
  • Almost 15 content downloads per day from the new site

 By 2012, the site averaged almost 11,000 visitors a month and 1,140 page views a day.

Video and photography dominate the redesign. Simplicity leads the way: There are never more than half a dozen links to stories on any one page, and the home page shows five major story headlines and decks, plus a maximum of three updates of Baylor Health Care’s internal news and the latest featured video. That’s it, except for the boilerplate, which consists of a banner notice at the top inviting journalists to apply for a “press pass” to the site, and a simple five-link site map at the upper left.

To view the winning online newsroom, click here

View More Health Care PR And Marketing Awards 2012 Winners.

Visit Ragan.com/Awards to learn more about awards opportunities.