by Paul Gourvitz, President, Gourvitz Communications

It’s no secret that the media landscape has profoundly changed.

In March of last year, the Pew Project for Excellence in Journalism released a survey that found for the first time that more people got their news online than in newspapers - 34% of respondents said they read news online within the past 24 hours compared to 31% who favored newspapers. The report also showed only local television news outpaced the web as the preferred source of news.

Because of this sea change, public relations firms are looking for new and innovative ways to get their clients messages onto computers, mobile devices, and tablets. One of the most effective new tools is an Interactive Media Tours (IMT).

IMTs are Satellite Media Tours (SMT) for websites, blogs and online news outlets, and the content lives in the editorial space of the websites. They can be produced virtually anywhere and require only a phone line or high-speed Internet connection, giving clients incredible flexibility.

Here are the 4 keys to a successful IMT:

1. Talent – Just like with most PR campaigns, if you want impressions, you need the right talent. To give you an idea of the kind of talent you need here is a list of some of the talent we have used on recent IMTs: Kelly Ripa for Electrolux, Kate Upton, Yvonne Strahovski, Ashley Greene, Hilary Duff, Jessica Szohr, and Bernie Williams for SoBe, Tim Gunn and Jennifer Hudson for Weight Watchers, Ted Allen for N’Espresso, and Bobby Flay for Hellmann’s. Talent is the #1 key for a successful IMT.

2. Book Sites High Traffic – Just like television and radio stations; websites and blogs have an insatiable thirst for superior content and access to celebrities and newsmakers. High traffic sites like The Huffington Post,, Radar Online, IGN, AOL, the Sugar Network,, Celebuzz, JustJared will take IMT content if you have the right talent and the segment is not overly branded. Producing a generic video and posting on YouTube and other video clearinghouses, is not an IMT. Posting a video on a website that has few Unique Viewers Per Month (UVPM) is not an IMT. A real IMT must deliver real audiences, on real websites, and the videos must be posted in the editorial space of the website. If you aren’t getting these 3 things, you are not getting an IMT.

3. High Quality Video – Even though the video will live on websites, most outlets demand high quality footage. Make sure to shoot in HD and compress and deliver high-resolution video.

4. Non-Branded Set – Sites are sensitive about commerciality. Make sure the set and the message are not overly commercial.

IMTs are a growing and essential part of any PR campaign, but they have to be done correctly. They must deliver real audiences. If they don’t, why would PR companies want to do them?