Why things don't work...anymore

I just got off my fourth phone call in the past week from someone asking my to help them get some media attention on another partner release.  I've told them the same thing I've been telling everyone for three years: Unless it is a painfully slow news month the chances are virtually zero.  Here's why:

 First, there are 5,000 private technology companies in early to mid stage funding in the US at any given time, according to Dow Jones,

Second, All 5,000 of those companies are negotiating with at least on Fortune 500 company on some sort of partnership/joint agreement.  All of those companies will issue at least one news release about the agreement and will be seeking media coverage.  That means the technology press are dealing with, on average 13 partnership announcements every week.

Third, none of these agreements will mention what specific customers are being served by these agreements, nor what products will be made available to customers as a result of this collaboration, nor will they contain anything more than a very general, high-level and superficial endorsement of the private tech company's involvement.

Finally, the target audience for these announcements is always a very limited part of the entire market, possibly 10-50 people total who are directly affected by the relationship between the two companies.

The press are part of what is called mass media.  Their goal is to produce information that is valuable to the largest possible number of people in a given industry.  10-50 people does not meet that requirement.  On top of that, the press is given the responsibility of finding out information that is out of the ordinary and 13 announcements a week that virtually say the very same thing, with changes only in the players and the names of the products, do not constitute what is callled "news."

Partnership announcements are good for three things: filling out space on websites, keeping the name of your company active on the web, and for salesmen to hand out to the 10-50 people that really care.