Thursday, July 05, 2012

7 new takes on media relations: What to know now

When the landscape keeps changing, your skills and approaches need to change with them, communicators. I've been scanning the landscape for you, and found seven new perspectives that I think will be shaking up your media relations plans for the forseeable future. Don't get caught behind the curve on these changes and trends:
  1. Figure out how news curation teams will work:  Steve Buttry has started a conversation on news curation teams as part of Digital First Media's "Project Thunderdome, which will handle national content for the 75 daily newspapers and their websites of Digital First Media (scattered across 18 states across the country), as well as some niche content that may be used by the sites of our weekly papers."
  2. Get on top of what the crowd's observing: In the New Yorker's Could Social Media Have Stopped Sandusky? is a line most companies and institutions could apply to their own not-yet-public problem areas: "What if all the boys had had phones on them they could have used to text to their friends or record or tweet about what was happening?" Ah, but today they do. What would citizens with cellphones be able to record about you and your organization or company? This is media relations with a twist, since you may see the results in two waves: From the citizens first, and later from news media seeking sources.
  3. What's your refrigerator strategy? Neiman Journalism Lab asks this question of news organizations, as a way of saying you should be thinking now about the next generation of Internet-enabled devices, from the fridge to Google Goggles. And so should communicators. What formats, uses, audiences should you be anticipating now? This goes beyond mobile to what's coming next.
  4. What are reporters' work lives like now? In How much can one journalist do well? you'll get one picture of the impact of overworked reporters using too many mediums under pressure. On the other hand, here are one online reporter's 10 reasons why online reporters are better than their predecessors. What are your reporters experiencing? It'll be tough to serve them well if you are working only from assumptions.
  5. What are the new bad practices in pitching bloggers and journos? By now, you'd best be including bloggers in your search for coverage--but not this way. Peter Shankman's "No, You Cannot 'Borrow My Audience'" reflects the bad pitch approaches many of us bloggers have faced. Don't add to the agony. While you're at it, check out this roundup of journalists tweeting their PR pet peeves.
  6. It's not a news cycle. It's a Twittercyle: The recent announcement of the Supreme Court's decision on the health care law is a great example of why the Twittercycle trumps the traditional news cycle. Have you factored this early warning system into your work cycles? You can stay a step ahead by following AP Planner on Twitter -- it's the Associated Press advance look at major events coming in the week ahead, otherwise known as a daybook on steroids.
  7. Figure out how new and traditional media are working together: Before you dismiss traditional media formats like magazines, take the time to find out how they're incorporating and working with new media. This SlideShare offers one perspective. How will this mashup change your pitches? (Hat tip to Zan McColloch-Lussier)
Registration is now open for the next Be an Expert on Working with Experts, for communicators and related professionals who work with subject-matter experts, policy analysts, scientists and engineers. The workshop is August 23 in Washington, DC, or I can bring it to your workplace. Get an early registration discount if you sign up by August 3. Details at the link.

1 comment:

Cynthia Parkhill said...

To the list of journalists tweeting PR peeves: Emails that address recipients as "Dear sirs." Why should I give any credibility to a product when its PR representative has erased me from my own newsroom?