As the number of platforms and channels to allow brands to connect with their targets continues to increase, online conversations are also increasing. Content marketers believe that the rise of conversational marketing is a good thing. However, making yourself heard and properly reaching your audiences via social networks, blogs and digital PR campaigns is becoming more and more complicated …


Reactive or “hijacked” (newsjacking) content is a relevant means of growth-hack (activating growth) and the level of engagement of your customers. These newsjacking opportunities, which you could call “key moments”, are a great way to build awareness and drive traffic to your brand site.

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Highsnobiety blog post
Highsnobiety blog post


This post from the Highsnobiety blog on the fashion dimension of the 2018 World Cup looks like a regular blog post. However, he was able to capitalize on the World Cup and allow the author to gain popularity. The post was shared 217 times on Facebook, 47 times on Twitter and recorded 10 backlinks (hyperlink pointing to a site or web page).

A winning result for a post that is extremely easy to create: all the information provided in the article is available online for free. This is a classic example of how you can, with a little documentary research, produce quality content on a budget that is kept to a minimum. But would this post have generated as much engagement if it had not been posted at the right time? Probably not.

You’ve just researched the passions, interests and events that your audience enjoys related to the industry in which you operate. It’s time to explore how you can imagine and produce winning, responsive content on a large scale.

Invest in a tech stack (a combination of programming languages, frameworks and tools that developers use to create a web or mobile application) and delegate ownership of the opportunity assessment.

Most brands and agencies invest in tools and platforms to perform tasks such as social listening (to follow, analyze and participate in online conversations), media monitoring and tracking changes in research data. However, you should also think about not doing too much: between an overflow of brand mentions or massive media coverage on a particular subject and your ability to take advantage of it.

Alerts and notifications should become your team’s new best friend. Is there a way to automate this process and delegate control to someone in your marketing team? Consider using social listening reports and signing up to receive journalist queries and Google alerts for topics relevant to you or your client.

If the answer is yes, it will speed up the time it takes to seize an opportunity and, therefore, for your brand the opportunity to capitalize on it. Ideally, this person should be creative and able to recognize opportunities that are worth exploring.

Establish templates, automate, create

Whether you want to enjoy responsive moments for content for social networks, “hub” content (must be generated regularly to reflect the current interests of audiences) or “hero” content (made up of spectacular videos aimed at attracting attention of the widest possible audience), the automation of the process will reduce delays, and allow your team to focus on other tasks. This is exactly what Specsavers (a global network of opticians) did for the Oscars in 2017. The brand had planned an image to put online by simple push.

Specsavers reacts to the Oscars
Specsavers reacts to the Oscars

Creating templates should be an important part of your automation toolkit for marketers, both at the agency and within the enterprise level. You can create templates for:

    • posts;


Each of the categories of models above must include some variants, pre-personalized, to further speed up the process. Controlling the workflow in this way means that, for example, on a large scale, the person in charge of scheduling social media messages has guidelines with possibilities for adaptation, rather than starting from scratch each time.

You can even prepare content to publish in real time, á like Oreo, during Super Bowl 2013. Admittedly, this example is a bit old. But it remains, to date, one of the best examples of responsiveness on social networks.

Oreo's rapid response to a Superbowl power failure
Oreo’s rapid response to a Superbowl power failure

During the Super Bowl, New Orleans suffered a major power outage. The Oreo marketing team took this opportunity to post a photo of an Oreo in the dark on Twitter, with the following text: “You can always stay in the dark.” This post was a hit on social networks. And frankly, it was incredibly simple: a photo, a font and a logo to be drawn at the right time. All the community manager had to do was a minor edition of the image and click the button.

Streamline your validation process

It’s not just the time frame that can make or break a campaign or strategy. Delays in validation are one of the main reasons for missed moments. Here’s how :

  • The validation between internal marketing and the brand, or the marketing agency and the customer, must be traceable and approved. Persons who can give their consent must be clearly identified and coverage must be anticipated for vacation periods;
  • Reduce validation times and oblige all parties to respect them;
  • Make sure that the comments have quickly gone back and the changes are made as soon as possible;
  • Depending on the levels of trust between the parties, removing the requirement to sign can significantly speed up deadlines but, of course, this comes with risks.

By complying with the above guidelines and streamlining your process to minimize the time between receiving a notification and posting content, you can more easily take advantage of the newsjacking possibilities.