CREATING A NEW NEWSROOM
Now you will begin to create a newsroom for your business or organization. Click the Manage Newsroom menu item at the top left of the window (Figure 5). A menu will appear. Choose Create A Newsroom.
You should now be at the Create Newsroom page. You will need to fill in information for all of the fields that are marked with an asterisk (*).
TIP: You may want to stop at this point, momentarily, to gather the content you need for this page. In the About Your Business section of the page, you will need to add content to the following fields: Company Overview, Company Long Description, and Company Boilerplate. If you need company approvals for this text, you should get them before you add text to the fields.
HINT: To make it easier, you can copy and paste text from a word processing program. Also note that a wide range of text formatting tools are available to you, similar to those you would use in a word processing program. These will help you make the text look the way you want it to. Also note there is a table-making tool, so if your information needs to be formatted as a table (in columns and rows) this is the best way to create it and have it look good to the newsroom viewer.
Company Overview: This is a brief description of your company. This text will be automatically displayed on the home page of your newsroom.
Company Long Description: This field gives you the opportunity to include a much more comprehensive description of your company in multi-paragraph form. The text will automatically be displayed when newsroom viewers choose the About menu on your newsroom’s home page.
Company Boilerplate: This is the default general information about your business that is typically found at the end of a press release. It usually provides some facts and contact information. Your company boilerplate will automatically appear at the bottom of any press release you post. You will always have the option to customize the boilerplate information when you post a particular press release, but having a default boilerplate is a nice feature that makes it faster to create a press release when the boilerplate doesn’t change from release to release.
NEWSROOM MANAGER HOME PAGE
After you have completed the Create Newsroom page, click the yellow Save and Continue button. You will be sent to the Newsroom Manager Home page (Figure 6). This page gives you some overview statistics about your newsroom.
Your recent newsroom-building activity will be displayed in the center of the page under Recent Activity. Once you start adding content to your newsroom this section of the page will begin to be filled in automatically. Soon you’ll also be able to see statistics on the number of people who are following your newsroom.
On the right hand column of the page you’ll see your Storage Usage. Here you’ll see how much of your account total storage space is used and how much is still available. Below that, you’ll see how many media files you’ve uploaded to the newsroom, and how much space they are using.
When you scroll down the page you’ll see a listing of recent content postings you’ve made: press releases, articles and blog posts. If you click on any of the items, NEWSLINE360 will take you to them.
ANOTHER WAY TO GET TO YOUR NEWSROOM ONCE YOU’VE CREATED IT
Another way to access your newsroom, once you’ve created it, is through your Member’s Dashboard window (Figure 7). This is the first page you encounter when you log in to NEWSLINE360.
On the right side of the window, you will see My Newsrooms. You will see a list of all newsrooms you have created under your member’s account. To the right of the newsroom name, you will see two action links: View and Manage.
If you click View, you will be taken to a preview of your newsroom as it currently looks to people who navigate to it on the web (this will only work if you have changed the status of your newsroom to “Published”. See below for how to do that.
If you click Manage, you will be taken to the Newsroom Manager page for that newsroom. From there, you can work on your newsroom.
NEWSROOM SETTINGS: ADD OR EDITING ADDITIONAL INFORMATION TO SET UP YOUR NEWSROOM
Now you will go to the Newsroom Settings action link at the top left of your Newsroom Manager Home Page. Here you will find five menu choices enabling to you complete the basic setup of your newsroom: Profile, Company, Industry Categories, Header & Menu Design and Links (Figure 8).
To start, choose Profile from the Newsroom Settings menu (Figure 9), and you will be taken to the Newsroom Settings page.
Notice that your initial status says “Draft”. This is the default setting for all new newsrooms. You will not be able to see a preview of your newsroom, and it will not be viewable on the web, until you change the status to “Published” and click the Save Profile info button at the lower left of the page.
You must fill in all fields with an asterisk (*). Some of the information will already be filled in, because you did that when you registered your account and created the newsroom. You can change this information at any time, but the asterisked fields must always contain information.
ADDING YOUR QUOTE OF THE DAY
A new field will appear on this page: Quote of the Day. The content of this optional field will automatically be displayed on the home page of your newsroom. This is a good place to put a quote from your business leadership, a great testimonial, or whatever else illustrates the character of your business or reflects your business’s reputation. Some newsroom owners may wish to change this quote on a daily basis. It is totally up to you as to how you handle your quote of the day.
Once you have completed the content for your Newsroom Profile, click the Save profile info button and you’ll return to the Newsroom Settings page.
COMPLETE YOUR COMPANY PROFILE SECTION
At the top left of your Newsroom Settings page, you’ll now see five tabs, going from left to rights: Profile, Company, Industry Categories, Header & Menu Design and Links. Click on the Company tab to complete or edit your Company Profile.
The first section is your Company Information. It should already be filled in, since you did this when you created your account and created the newsroom. Edit the information if you wish to do so.
Now proceed to the About Your Business section. Here you’ll see the Company Overview, Company Long Description and Company Boilerplate fields that you filled out when you first created the newsroom. This section is where you’ll go any time you want to edit or update this information.
Once all of the information in the About Your Business section is correct, please click the Save company info button at the lower left of the page. You will return to the Newsroom Settings page.
SELECT YOUR INDUSTRY CATEGORIES
Why Select Industry Categories?
In order for your news and information to reach the correct Media Members (journalists), it is very important that you indicate which industries your business or organization participates in. Many journalists only cover one or a few industries, and they don’t want to receive news that doesn’t apply to what they cover.
By designating the industries of your business, you are much more likely to get your news and information to journalists who want to receive them.
Be aware that Media Members also will complete a professional profile when they become part of the NEWSLINE360 media network. They will choose from the same list of industries and sub-industries from which you choose. They can also update their industry and news category preferences at any time as their assignments change.
Keeping your industry categories up to date will result in consistently good matches between your newsroom and Media Members. Journalists who receive your news will want it and you’ll have a better chance of getting good news coverage. Everyone will benefit.
Now we’ll show you how to choose your company’s industry categories: Click on the Industry Categories tab of the Newsroom Settings page. You will see Quick Search for category names on the left and the Checklist on the right.
Using the Industry Category Checklist
The Checklist is NEWSLINE360’s comprehensive list of industries and subindustries (Figure 10). The industry categories are designated by a plus (+) sign to the left. When you click on the plus (+) sign, the industry category will expand to show its subindustry categories and the plus (+) sign will change to a minus (-) sign. (You can collapse the list of subindustries by clicking on the minus (-) sign.) Simply click the box to the left of the category or sub-category to select them. You can select up to ten industries/subindustries for your newsroom.
The first time you select categories, browse through all of the categories and subcategories to familiarize yourself with them. Then, select those categories that best represent your company. We recommend that you select subcategories rather than industries if at all possible, unless your company is involved in all subcategories within the industry category. Subcategories provide more detailed information about your company’s business focus.
After you have selected your industry and subindustry categories, scroll down to the bottom of the page and click the Save categories button.
Using the Quick Search for Categories
Now that you are familiar with the Checklist, let’s take a look at the Quick Search for categories (Figure 11). This tool will make it a bit easier to select categories, especially if you know what you’re looking for.
Simply start typing in the name of the industry category you want to select. As you type, once the Quick Search tool figures out what you’re searching for, it will bring up a drop-down list of the industry and its subcategories. Click the Select this category button and the appropriate checkbox will be filled in on the Checklist.
Once you’ve chosen your categories and subcategories, they will automatically appear checked in the Checklist of the right. If you want to de-select a category or subcategory, simply click on its checkbox.
Remember to click the Save categories button when you are finished.
CREATE YOUR NEWSROOM HEADER AND MENU DESIGN
Click on the Header & Menu Design tab and you’ll come to the Header & Menu Design page where you create the graphic look and feel of your newsroom. There are eleven elements to your header and menu design:
- Header Motto
- Custom Logo
- Header Background Image
- Header Text Color
- Header Background Color
- Hover-over Menu Text Color
- Hover-over Dropdown Menu Text Color
- Menu Bar Background Color
- Menu Bar Text Color
- Menu Bar Hover Text Color
- News/Info box background color
HINT: Before you complete this section, you may want to stop and gather the files, information and resources that you need.
Add your Header Motto
Your Header Motto will be displayed on top of the upper right side of your Header Background Image. You will be able to choose the color of the text for your motto, so that it is readable and looks good with your Header Background Image. See below for instructions.
Add your Custom Logo
Your company logo will be displayed at the top left of every page on your newsroom. The logo will look best if its dimensions are 320 pixels wide by 320 pixels tall. You can use the following file formats for your logo: JPG, PNG, or GIF. If you have a version that uses colors from the web palette, it will render most accurately. However, this is not crucial.
You can choose to display your logo in either a rectangular box or an oval-shaped box. Experiment with both styles to see which one works best.
Add your Header Background Image
The Header Background Image is the image that will fill your newsroom banner, from the right edge of the logo to the right hand border of your newsroom pages. For your Header Background Image to look its best, the image should be sized at exactly 985 pixels wide by 200 pixels tall. Your image file must be in JPG, PNG or GIF format.
NOTE: It is not essential for the image to be 985x200, but it definitely will look best with those exact dimensions, so please ask your image-making staff to create a header image with those dimensions. If you choose, rather than enter a Header Motto, you can ask your image-making staff to incorporate the motto into the Header Background Image—you’ll leave the Header Motto field blank.
Adjust your Header Text Color
The Header Text Color tool will let you pick a color for your motto from the web palette. You can click on the default black square to bring up a custom color picker, or you can enter the code for a standard web color that you want to use. If you scroll to the top right of your Newsroom Manager, you will see a View Newsroom button. If you click that, another browser window will open up, letting you see what your newsroom looks like. If you don’t like how the Header Text Color looks, you can go back and change it.
NOTE: Make sure you’ve set your newsroom status to “Published” in your Newsroom Settings. Otherwise you won’t be able to see a preview your newsroom.
TIP: Once you have your newsroom preview window open, every time you make changes in your Header & Menu Design page and click the Save header info button, you can simply go back to your newsroom preview window, hit the F5 key on your keyboard, and the newsroom preview window will automatically refresh, showing you the latest changes.
Adjust Your Menu Bar Colors
On the right side of your Header & Menu Design page, you’ll find your Menu Bar color options (see Figure 12). There are five elements used to create the color scheme for your newsroom’s menu bar: Hover-over Menu Text Color, Hover-over Dropdown Menu Text Color, Menu Bar Background Color, Menu Bar Text Color, and the Menu Bar Hover Text Color.
TIP: This would be a good time to find out the signature colors of your business or brand, for you may want to use them in your Menu Bar to maintain the branded look of your newsroom. If possible, find out the web color codes that best approximate your company’s signature Pantone or CMYK colors. Try to get the color codes for both light and dark signature colors, because both will come in handy when building your menu bar color scheme. Your marketing staff should have this information. Web color codes typically begin with a hashtag (#) followed by a combination of six numbers or letters (for example, #004a77 or #eaf0f5).
Step 1: The Menu Bar Background Color is the most prominent element. It is the color of the overall menu bar. Click the web color picker to choose a custom color or type in the web color code.
Step 2: Choose a Menu Bar Text Color. This is the text color of the menu headings (i.e. News & Posts, Events, About, Contacts, Social Media Feeds) when no mouse arrow is hovering over them. For readability, typically you will want your Menu Bar Text Color to be light if your Menu Bar Background Color is dark, or dark if your Menu Bar Background Color is light.
Step 3: Now, choose a Menu Bar Hover Text Color. This is the color that the menu header background color automatically changes into when a mouse arrow is hovering over it. This color doesn’t necessarily have to be a signature color, but is should contrast, either in color tone or in lightness/darkness, with the regular Menu Bar Text Color.
Step 4: Choose a Hover-over Menu Text Color. This is the color that the menu item background color changes to when your mouse arrow hovers over a menu item.
Step 5: Choose a Menu Bar Hover-over Dropdown Menu Text Color. This is the color that the dropdown menu text changes to when your mouse arrow is hovering over an item in a dropdown menu.
Choose a News/Info Box Background Color
The Info. Box Color is the final color choice you will make to complete your newsroom color scheme. Use the color picker (Figure 13) to choose a custom color or type in the web color code for the correct color.
The News/Info Box Background Color serves two purposes. First, it is the background color for certain blocks of text that are meant to be highlighted per the NEWSLINE360 design template. Figure 14 illustrates how NEWSLINE360 will use your choice of News/ Info Box Background Color to automatically create a background block of color for certain text elements:
In this example, the Company Information section of the About page has a background block of color that is determined by the choice of Info. Box Color (in this example, a light blue, #d0d1f8).
Second, the News/Info Box Background Color also serves as a block of background color that appears behind a submenu choice when a mouse arrow is hovering over it. For example, when a viewer goes to the home page of the newsroom and clicks on the News & Posts menu heading, a submenu will appear (Press Releases, Articles, Blog Posts, Image Publications, etc.). Each submenu choice will have the News/Info Box Background Color as a background color when the mouse arrow hovers over it.
Be sure to click the Save header info button on the lower left of the Header Design page or you will lose your work.
ADD LINKS TO YOUR NEWSROOM SETTINGS
In this section you will configure links to your business’s social media sites, blog, RSS feed, website and so on. Remember, your newsroom can automatically display your social media feeds. In the future, NEWSLINE360 will be able to feed your social media sites with the content you publish on your newsroom.
Click on the Links tab of your Newsroom Settings page. Here you will enter the URLs of your various sites. Be sure to type in the complete URLs (examples: http://facebook.com/myfacebookname; http://twitter.com/mytwitteraccount; http://pinterest.com/mypinterestaccount). See Figure 15.
The Other Links section of the page gives you fields to enter additional links that your company may want to use for additional websites, such as a promotion landing page. The Link Text refers to the words you will use on your newsroom pages to describe the additional URL, and the Link URL is the actual web address that the Link Text will refer to. When people click on the URL text a new browser window will appear and take them to the Link URL address. Note that the Other Links field is not yet active; our software development team is still working on it. We will inform you when this feature is ready.
Be sure to click the Save Links info button to save your work.