Confessions of a News Jacker.

A good story starts with a beginning, and this is no different But if you want the TL;DR Version then:

• Crazy man made stupid comment
• British press hammered him
• We news jacked it
• Got lots of links and twitter mentions
• MP responds saying will provide picture of him playing 😉
• Music shop in Dundee got a right result!

Once upon a time there was a man called Bloom, and he was blooming marvelous link bait.

The end.

Well not quite, but, by now you will all have read and heard the story of the buffoon Bloom and his quotes about “Bongo Bongo” land.

Rainbow Music is a fantastic store in Bonnie Dundee and is Tayside’s largest independent musical store, but they don’t just service Dundee. They will ship kit anywhere in the world.

The guys who own and run the store are super nice and have a big fan base as they are also quality musicians. Every band who does the rounds, buys kit from Rainbow.

But how do you make a well known brand in Scotland’s 4th city reach further afield?

How do you get them some visibility and traffic?

How do you increase their reach?

They don’t have a big budget and online end up competing for space against Amazon and E-Bay and the likes.

Well how about News jacking!

“the process by which you inject ideas or angles into breaking news, in real-time, in order to generate media coverage for yourself or your business.”

Yesterday morning on Twitter I saw this:


I responded immediately throwing my friends at into the mix.

Lyndon very kindly offered a free consultation, he wrote the press release, letter along with the consultation and coordinating the campaign and we had some ammunition in the background.

Sometimes in life it’s not what you know but who you know.

Twitter to that end has opened up my network of contacts exponentially.

Furthermore, with some advanced search operators and a few tools I can pretty much find anyone out there I need to.

Someone who had seen what was going on was Chris Dyson from Chris was as keen as Lyndon and myself to make it work.

A joint team effort to Newsjack Mr Bloom’s ludicrous comments and get some publicity for Rainbow Music.

It was game on.

Think about it. How much would this cost?

Three super experienced guys working on this together jacking a story for a music store in Dundee.

Rainbow Music could not have afforded this, but, we were in and we wanted to make it work. We all have experience (a lot of it, not mentioning any birthdays) and so the plan was hatched. Lyndon would create the content and Dyson and I would push it out. Then we hit a couple of small issues.

  • Time.
  • Mechanics.

Can’t do anything about time, but Rainbow Music didn’t have a blog, and with an antiquated CMS we couldn’t get the article published on the site.

SHIT… What do we do? Solution… Facebook.

Now, it was not ideal to publish this on Facebook but time was against us so we made it work, and work it did! You have them big old PR agencies with their Filofax 😉 wanting to charge a fortune to get you press coverage.

Well how about 3 intelligent motivated experienced individuals and a Facebook post?

The answer….SUCCESS!

Boom Hitting some influencers like


And (well played Lyndon!, getting Guido Fawkes involved and pushing to political bloggers it was a key part of the strategy!)

Just some of the links attained from this news jack were…


You have this post and Lyndon has published a post here – and he is also going to be creating a full case study from the learning’s and sharing with the people he mentors.

Oh, you can also sign up for some of his crazy, but relevant content ideas here at his new news jacking alerts

Yesterday morning when all this was breaking, the guys at Rainbow were setting up for another new day selling some of the best kit you can buy.

Then opportunity came knocking and you have to grab it with both hands, what’s the above worth £10,000 +…..

The most viewed page on their website now is the Bongos Page.

They normally reach 400 people with a Facebook post but yesterday it was over 4,000

This was an awesome jack, it was great fun, the collaboration was stunning and my friends at Rainbow got PR that money can’t buy.

Keep jacking baby and remember…

The Future Is Unwritten!

Update – we had the local paper publish both hard copy and online the story today.

and another fine link

And the sister paper to The Courier is the The Evening Telegraph and they have also covered it with another nice juicy link 😉


  1. Iain Bartholomew on 9th August 2013 at 1:01 pm

    How do you reconcile this kind of opportunity with the moral outrage that the original story creates? I.e. Do you worry about a potential negative reaction to your story from people he offended?

    • ChrisLDyson on 9th August 2013 at 1:38 pm

      Great question Iain…

      Picking the right story/angle is key here. Like any “stunt” you have to weigh up the risks and apply your business ethics, hopefully Lyndon can add some comments here but from my perspective with this angle…

      Bloom’s comments were completely outrageous… actually they were ridiculous… and I don’t think many people in society or media actually agree with the vast majority of UKIP policies.

      The other thing here is that UKIP is hated north of the border… Farage was locked in a pub by an angry mob a few short weeks ago I recall…

      In this instance the angle was to poke fun at Bloom and his political opinion and at no point in the letter or press release did the shop take a side or directly attack Mr Bloom, most of the bloggers/press had done that all day.

    • barrie moran on 9th August 2013 at 7:11 pm

      Hey Iain.

      Thanks again mate for dropping by, reading and sharing I appreciate it.

      To echo Dyson, it’s a great question.

      First off, this guys comments were ridiculous and if he doesn’t get the sack, well that says more about UKIP than anyone need to ever write.

      Most “brands” run scared from opportunities like this for that very reason they are afraid of the potential backlash.

      It’s about the right content in front of the right person at the right time.

      Yes, you have to be careful.

      Not every brand or niche can get away with this.

      In this instance Lyndon through out a great opportunity and I knew the perfect fit for the glove. Someone in the niche but a brand that was willing to take a “little bit” of a risk and have some fun.

      That’s what we did and what a result.

      Let’s be honest. This is not going to work for everyone, but, there are lots of site sites it does and it can work for.

      In fact, I believe all client of all agencies should attribute some budget to jacking, well at least the monitoring and idea generation, then its a commercial brand decision to decide whether or not to pursue it.

      of course I would be championing that they do.

      Could there have been potential backlash?

      IMHO No, but of course there is always a chance.

      In this fine example of how to jack effectively the way it was presented I believe meant no potential backlash was possible.

      But that’s just my HO.

      Would I do it again ? Yes.

      Would I do it again on a topic which could be “difficult” ? Yes.

      Would the client? Don’t Know.

      Right Client, Right Time, Right Content, Right People = Right Result!

  2. Matthew Marley on 9th August 2013 at 1:32 pm

    Brilliant mate love this! Well done……

    • barrie moran on 9th August 2013 at 7:13 pm

      Hey Matthew.

      Thanks Buddy, appreciate the support here, Twitter and on G!

      It was an absolute blast mate.

      Idiotic comments which needed to be leveraged.

      Fair play to Lyndon, he threw it out and I jumped and next minute between him, Dyson and me we had a dream team working on it.


      Rainbow Music, awesome, they ran with it, they embraced it and loved it. When working with clients like that it makes our jobs easier 😉

      Can’t wait to the next one!

  3. Craig McGill on 9th August 2013 at 2:00 pm

    It’s good PR opportunism, plain and simple – the sort of thing Andy Barr from 10 Yetis would well and truly admire. This is what PRs should be doing day in, day out.

    As for outrage – people are always upset at something – but what Lyndon and the team did here is take something offensive and make humour out of it, which turns it round quite nicely.

    It’s a job well done all round IMO. Be interesting to see if there’s any long-term benefits to the shop.

    • barrie moran on 9th August 2013 at 7:38 pm

      Hey Graig

      Thank you, appreciate your comments.

      Already seen a little success for the shop and hopefully we wee a lot more.

      It was a great result yesterday and today and there are already plans afoot how it could be maintained, followed up, new ideas and alerts set up for the next one.

      We live in an ever changing environment and world and our jobs is to to keep up , adapt and evolve finding the best solution for the companies we work with.

      When opportunity come knocking…

      Invite them in, pour them a drink, find them a seat and say thank you!!!!!!!!

  4. Marta Krukowska on 9th August 2013 at 2:28 pm

    Well played 🙂

    • barrie moran on 9th August 2013 at 7:14 pm

      So, I know this is probably wrong, but here goes 😉

      również bardzo dziękuję mój mały przyjaciel.

      Wiesz, że Twoje komentarze są zawsze mile widziane!

  5. Martin Macdonald on 9th August 2013 at 3:09 pm

    A perfect example how being small and agile beats being large and cumbersome. Trust me, if an agency had to approach a client, get sign off, this would never have seen the light of day. Probably the only good example Ive seen of big business achieving this was when oreo’s newsjacked the superbowl lights out last year. Good work guys!

    • Lyndon Antcliff on 9th August 2013 at 4:32 pm

      Thanks Martin, I talk about how I conceived and implemented the campaign here, There are actually quite a few examples of how business has used Newsjacking, and it’s true a lot of agencies are still way behind the time and still relying on stuff like article marketing and industrial guest posting.

      But a clever and well timed campaign such as this which is well delivered can bring real ROI, and people that get it will have no problem initiating such campiagns.

    • barrie moran on 9th August 2013 at 7:19 pm

      Hi Martin.

      First off thanks for reading and sharing, appreciate that!

      Social is a leveler for so many brands, but IMHO most are scared of it, well most people are scared of what they don’t understand 😉

      Rainbow Music were fantastic, quick sign off and ran with an awesome idea. Props to Lyndon.

      Agree, if this was an agency pitch or project, the chances of success in today’s world would be poor, but, people, brands, companies need to move with the times.

      Appreciate the support, want you involved in the next jack 😉

  6. eMarketing Wall on 9th August 2013 at 8:30 pm

    […] Confessions of a News Jacker., Barrie Moran SEO […]

  7. Tony Dimmock on 10th August 2013 at 11:50 am


    What a brilliant example of helping a small local business gain immense visibility!

    For the small business community, the biggest challenge is creativity – and you and the team nailed it..

    Well done – this is an example to us all of how digital pro’s can help 🙂

    • barrie moran on 12th August 2013 at 7:41 am

      Thanks Tony, appreciate the comments!

      Yeah, right story, right people, right time.

      It was a great result and great fun!

      For me personally there was some great learning in the process too and I am looking forward to the next one.

  8. […] Confessions of a News Jacker., Barrie Moran SEO […]

  9. David Cohen on 11th August 2013 at 12:41 pm

    I love how quickly you guys collaborated to successfully pull this off. In your experience, how often can/should a business newsjack a story before this tactic runs its course for a particular business? In other words, how often could Rainbow Music newsjack a story and still get this kind of coverage?

    • barrie moran on 12th August 2013 at 7:46 am

      Hi David.

      Thanks for reading and your comment.

      Speed was the essence to this jack. The breaking news covering the comments of Bloom and getting the right story out there.

      It was great fun and working with Lyndon and Chris was a blast.

      I think they type of coverage depends on the story you are jacking.

      I also think that if all a “brand” is seen to be doing is jacking stories without it being part of their overall mix of activity their opportunity for exposure will be greatly diminished.

      This one jack / story has great long term potential for Rainbow with various spin offs and ways you can play the story.

      Would another jack in close succession to this one for Rainbow be appropriate, well yes if the story was right.

      I believe that’s the key element.

      It’s the right client to the right story.

      For Rainbow the eyes and ears are open for the next story, but when that is, who knows.

  10. P1P Link Building Roundup #15 on 12th August 2013 at 9:13 pm

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  11. James Crawford on 24th March 2014 at 1:28 pm

    I’m a bit late to this post. Yep – this is what PR people are meant to do day in day out. So I guess you could call yourself a PR person now Barrie.

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