Global media, marketing and advertising powerhouse WPP said a ‘glitch’ meant that journalists and editors could no longer find links to the company press office or news page sections via search engines such as Google.
Until a few weeks ago it was possible to type ‘WPP press office’ into a search engine and then be presented with links to the firm’s news release pages on its website. But the links suddenly stopped working.
News page access
Like many other news publishers, Mediashotz regularly scans the press office or news pages of media and marketing firms’ websites, to see what their latest news is.
Instead of being linked to the FTSE-100 ad firm’s news release pages, typing ‘WPP press office’ started presenting searchers with links to Yahoo! Finance or GroupM.
This meant that the only way searchers could find WPP’s news/press release pages was by typing WPP.com, then clicking the ‘Media’ menu, and then clicking on ‘News’. So basically a lot more work than just typing ‘WPP press office’ or ‘WPP News’ into a browser.
When Mediashotz first contacted WPP on 8 April, a company spokesperson denied there was any issue: “We’ve never had a ‘WPP press office’ page on our website, so not entirely sure about how you’ve accessed the page in the past via Google search.
“Our news section falls under ‘media’ in the navigation and nothing has changed about how the page is set up or how we publish press releases on our website.”
Editors, reporters and even investors need access to company news pages, to keep up with the latest news releases coming from the firm.
So Mediashotz, unconvinced by the spokesperson’s explanation, decided to chase the world’s largest marketing firm urging it to investigate further why it was now so difficult to access its press office pages.
Today, we can report that all has been restored and it is now once again possible to search for WPP’s news/press pages via a search engine, which saves hard-pressed editors and reporters vital time.
“Just to confirm that we haven’t changed how we publish our news, nor do we have a new policy in place”, the WPP spokesperson wrote in an email to Mediashotz on Wednesday.
“I asked IT to look into it and it appears to have been a glitch somewhere, but typing in ‘WPP press office’ now throws up the page again, so not 100% (sure) what was happening before.”