Monthly Archives: November 2010

Busy times: TheMediaBriefing, conferences and student blogging advice

Hello there. Yes, it’s been a while, but I’ve been busy. TheMediaBriefing is taking up a lot of time and as I wrote here before it’s a very exciting project we’re building from the ground up. I intend to write more here about some of the interesting things we’re doing with content and technology, in the hope that someone might find it interesting.

But otherwise, here are a few things I’ve been up to:

Building a taxonomy and building a user-interface: type in a search query on TMB and look at the related topics, people, issues, companies. You can sign up as a registered user (for free) and track the topics you want to follow, as Martin Stabe points out very nicely. We’re working with Idio on this to make it better all the time so feedback is welcome.

Commissioning research reports: There’s one out right now on paywalls and subscription business models (it really is worth reading – get the exec summary for free here) and there’s one on the way on mobile apps. My job title is “editor and chief analyst” and much of what I do is far removed from the traditional newsroom reporter role that I’ve held in the past. We’re always interested to hear ideas for what we should next, by the way, so suggestions welcome on that.

Getting more into video: I have a Kodak Zi8 video camera – they are widely used by the Wall Street Journal and other news orgs – and as various conference delegates have found recently, I’m not afraid to use it. I’ve been to interview a few media luminaries recently and I’ve got a lot more lined up in the coming weeks. For example, here’s me talking to John Barnes of Incisive Media about digital strategy…

Student blogging advice: I was asked to talk to journalism students at City University, London this week on how to market their blogs and get noticed with “apps and widgets”. But as I told them, this is looking at the problem from the wrong angle. Good, relevant content tends to market itself simply because people like reading it and will recommend it to others. There is no app or widget that can make your blog readable – and in any case “blog” is unhelpful and outdated term that I personally would avoid. Anyway, here’s the video, via @ThoroughlyGood, and the rest of the night is rounded up by him here.

I also strongly recommend Martin’s talk, which really did get me reading my RSS reader more intently than I have been! He hits on something that every journalist could ask themselves: do you read enough? Do you know everything about your patch?

Lastly, it’s conference season: And I’ve been to some really interesting ones, some old ones and some new ones. AOP was good – it’s where everyone you want to see usually us (I interviewed Google UK’s MD Matt Brittin among others); Forrester’s Marketing Summit was an eye-opener and had lots of lessons for publishers and yesterday was my first time at the APA Content Summit, where Rory Sutherland gave what I thought was a splendid presentation on behavioural economics and advertising.

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