The online newsroom is increasingly important to corporate communicators, according to the preliminary results of a social media news survey conducted by TekGroup International and associate professor Ken Payne of Western Kentucky University. More than 42 percent of respondents indicate they make use of corporate websites when following, sharing or posting news and information with 26 percent saying they visit very often and 17 percent all the time. 


According to Steve Momorella, partner and co-founder of TekGroup International, “What we are seeing is news consumers using the corporate online newsroom as a principle source for information when following or sharing news using social media tools. And they are doing this in huge numbers.”


 Almost 75 percent of survey respondents indicate they frequently (32 percent) or sometimes (42 percent) visit a corporate web site after learning of a news story through social media channels with roughly half of all respondents saying they sometimes (32 percent) or frequently (18 percent) use social media tools to fact-check corporate websites and press releases.


“Our respondents indicate they are using social media tools habitually with almost 90 percent saying they use Twitter, Facebook, and blogs on a daily basis to follow/monitor news and information,” says Payne. Slightly less say they use the tools to share/recommend daily news and information (70 percent), with even fewer writing/posting news and information using social media tools (60 percent).


 “This finding is even more interesting when compared to the low number of respondents who use the tools for other daily tasks such as research job opportunities (15 percent), find a place to live (4 percent), find someone’s contact information (14 percent), or find directions (15 percent),” Payne says.


The most popular social media tool for tracking news and information seem to be Twitter (60 percent), followed closely by Facebook (53 percent), with these respondents indicating they use these tools all the time. Surprisingly, blogs (24 percent) and sharing sites such as Flickr and Youtube (18 percent) are not used regularly for social news tasks.