How Broadcast Fax Works

Broadcast Fax Applications

Travel agents send broadcast faxes advertising sales.
Travel agents send broadcast faxes advertising sales.
Photo courtesy Dreamstime

The public relations industry is one of the heaviest users of broadcast fax. As we mentioned earlier, public relations professionals often send story ideas and press releases to dozens or hundreds of journalists and publications at once.

Popular broadcast fax services like PR Newswire help PR professionals target their PR campaigns by choosing from hundreds of thousands of stored journalist contacts.

Crisis communications is another branch of public relations that uses broadcast fax. In the event of an emergency or disaster, the public relations department of a company can employ broadcast fax as one of several ways to reach employees and constituents.

There are dozens of companies that offer mass notification or emergency notification services that can instantly send thousands of messages across all available platforms: e-mail, phone, SMS and fax.

Broadcast fax is particularly useful for any industry that relies heavily on fax technology to handle internal and external communications. Real estate, for example, is still a fax-heavy industry. Agents can fax listings to multiple clients. Regional managers for large real-estate firms can fax reports to multiple property managers [source: Xerox Corp].

Broadcast fax has always been popular for targeted advertising and promotions:

  • Airlines, cruise ship operators and hotels: special, last-minute promotions to thousands of travel agents [source: Its the Fax].
  • Restaurants: lunch menus and weekly specials to local offices that have signed up to receive them.
  • Businesses of all sizes and budgets: special deals to existing clients.

Fax advertising, however, has come under increasing legal scrutiny over the past decade, leading to strict Federal and State anti-spam laws and costly lawsuits. In the next section, we'll look at the legal restrictions on broadcast fax.