Thursday, January 30, 2014

Media relations must-reads: New tools and perspectives

As journalism keeps trying to wrap its head around social media, new publishing models and the wide range of visual and tracking tools available these days, media relations requires more sleuthing by communicators who want to keep up. The good news? Many of the journalism world's digital tools and insights will work for your end of the business, too. Here are some must-reads that have come across my feeds of late, with tools, ideas and shifts in thinking that smart communicators should be adopting:
  • Rethinking the news hole: If what you're promoting isn't necessarily the most urgent breaking news, your day may have arrived: The New York Times public editor looked at how little hard news is in the newspaper these days."Even in this digital age, I’d argue, the printed front page is still a strong indication of editors’ news values," Margaret Sullivan writes of her own research. On one recent day, she found just one front-page article of 13 that could be called news. Click the link to find out what did make the front.
  • Rethinking the interview: A few of my clients are asking for media training for AMAs--the real-time Q&A "Ask Me Anything" sessions on Reddit. They're smart to start anticipating this new format, and Mashable has a rundown that compares AMAs to the interview options you're used to. Time to start getting smart on this option; let me know if you want to focus a media training this way with an email to eloquentwomanATgmail.
  • Got you covered: If you're already using Google Alerts to track news coverage, it's good to know that Google Alerts have been updated, allowing you to share results on Facebook, Twitter and Google+. Might be an easy way to share coverage with your team, board of directors, donors or other fans.
  • Visualize the news, part one: Have you tried the new, more visual way to view "today's paper" in the New York Times redesign? I admit, I skipped right past the new feature until this blogger walked me through it, step by step. A must-read, again, for media relations types, so you can see how stories are displayed anew and think about how they're structured in the new format. The feature can only be used by Times subscribers, for now.
  • Visualize the news, part two: Will Newspeg become Pinterest for journalists? looks at the new site, which looks and feels like Pinterest, right down to the "peg it" button and the tiled images--except that they link to your collections of news coverage. You can curate boards on different topics as well as share and comment. This, too, might be a clever way to easily share news coverage with your clients, as well as to find coverage on your topic. You could, of course, do exactly the same thing on Pinterest. Here's a look at the Newspeg front page:

(Creative Commons licensed photo from derekbruff's photostream on Flickr)

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