In 2008 Swedish based Mynewsdesk became part of the reputable NHST Media Group Asia based in Singapore. Mynewsdesk has turned out to be the energetic and fast growing little sister, who gives the old journalistic flagship a needed view into the future of the media world.
The demand for the all-in-one package of PR the way Mynewsdesk is providing it seems to be growing fast. Not only in Scandinavia where Mynewsdesk has already a very strong presence but also in Asia where the copy mentality in fast becoming a thing of the past, and the market instead starts focusing on branding their own products in a global perspective. And that is where it gets interesting for Mynewsdesk.
The concept of Mynewsdesk is to give journalists and other news consumers the possibility to subscribe exactly the news they want in their mailbox and on their news page. At the same time Mynewsdesk offer their customers, which typically would be big brands wanting to enter a certain market, guidance in how to get their subscribers to read and follow up on their stories.
It is basically PR work, but Mynewsdesk wants to be updated on the latest trends in how people consume news and that is what they do by expanding globally.
”We are working on making Mynewsdesk a global player in many different ways and it is an important goal for us,” Managing Director of NHST Media Group Asia, Leonard Opitz Stornes, says.
“We are looking to the market in Japan and Korea, because they have strong global brands such as Samsung and Toshiba. Companies like that can benefit from utilizing Mynewsdesk on the global market,” he adds.
All-in-one PR package
The way Mynewsdesk is set up makes it possible for the company to guide their clients through the market so they can fit their news to their receivers preference as exact as possible.
”We are a one-stop shop for PR,” Stornes explains.
“Mynewsdesk can manage all the PR activity from one platform, so it eases the process of sending out press releases and offers more diversity on social media activities,” he adds.
In addition Mynewsdesk are monitoring statistics, which makes it possible for them to see, in what geographical regions and in what industry sectors their clients have readers, the Norwegian tells.
Not outplaying traditional PR
Though the way of making PR for Mynewsdesk is if not revolutionary for the constantly changing world of communication at least it is adding to the level of targeting marketing.
”We help our clients and guide them along and give them instructions how to do their press releases better, so in the end they will be able to do it on their own,” Stornes says.
”Our philosophy is that content is everything. If you have good content, you have to utilize it,” he adds.
The Mynewsdesk-way of doing PR is not replacing traditional PR, Stornes believes.
”It is the future in terms of how companies can effectively leverage on communication with the market. It does not mean it is the end of traditionally PR. It is not like a competition to the existing but more like a supplement to make it more effective. Mynewsdesk should not be seen as a threat to traditional PR, more like a supplement,” he says.
Fresh air to an old business
Not only is Mynewsdesk covering a certain need for a more concrete and targeted PR for businesses working to enter a specific market. Mynewsdesk has also been an advantage for the old tradition-bound NHST group it selves.
”By having Mynewsdesk in the group we can develop a better understanding of how the future of digital, PR and media are developing. It helps us to better understand what the world looks like,” the Norwegian adds.
”Because NHST is a traditionally and old firm, we saw into the future to have a company that looks into the social media, so we can learn and better understand the future,” Stornes explains, adding the digitalisation as an area where NHST has taken advantage from having Mynewsdesk under its wings.
More influence to the social media consumers
”Both bloggers and Facebook-followers will have more influence on the digital area, that means it is important for us to try to see the trends and how they are moving. We try to go forward and capitalize on bringing our knowledge to our customers,” Leonard Stornes tells, adding that the company recently made a survey showing how journalists are picking up stories and what their preferences are in terms of PR.
”What makes you want to follow up on a certain story and what makes you not want it? That is the knowledge we can bring to our customers,” stressing that exactly that knowledge is important because the readers and their behavior are changing in the years to come.
”Now many of our readers are decision makers and owners and they are in their 40s and 50s. But the future businesses are run by young people who less and less get their news from the printed paper,” he says, meaning that the way Mynewsdesk is spreading news for companies has a strong appeal to especially young people.
To have Mynewsdesk in the group has also changed the revenue sources, Stornes explains. So far it comes from advertisements and circulation from the printed versions, but because the readership habits are changing we are increasingly developing our digital offering. At the same time also improving the paper product as we operate in niche markets and are market leaders within core industry segments and have a very loyal readership and customer base.
Stornes himself arrived in Singapore in 1995 to built up the NHST business which until that time was run from Norway. But Stornes believed in the potential of Singapore and Singapore became the first step into the Asian market, where the NHST group today besides from the four offices in the Riverwalk building in Singapore counts offices in China, Hong Kong and India and a total of 70 employees in the Asia section.
NHST publish newspapers and online services for the oil and gas, shipping, seafood and renewable industry, counting e.g. Upstream, TradeWinds, Intrafish and Recharge plus the Norwegian business daily Dagens Naeringsliv.
At the moment NHST is working on a strategy for Mynewsdesk to enter the market in Thailand as well. Everything is pretty much in the process of consideration, but according to Leonard Opitz Stornes, the entrance to the Thai market could be through the tourism and travel segments as we here have many existing core clients globally and build the business within other industries in Thailand step by step.
”Hopefully we will have a Thai version of Mynewsdesk where the main Thai brands can better communicate within their own country, and also get the global companies to communicate with the Thai brands”.