Gordon began his talk by outlining the massive changes occurring in the media sector in the last five years. He highlighted an increase of online competition, the power and presence of social media, news aggregators and the public’s short term attention span, as the driving factors in changing the media landscape. These changes have resulted in:
- Fewer publications and fewer journalists to cover the news.
- Journalists having an increased workload.
- Media outlets have added social media and web coverage to their repertoire to reach a younger audience.
- The modern newsroom is forced to do more with less, while providing the public with 24-hour news coverage.
According to Gordon, local readers want news and sports coverage and with staff cuts, arts, entertainment and lifestyle coverage have “taken a hit”. The Examiner no longer employs a local arts and entertainment writer. This means coverage in these areas is harder to obtain and Gordon stated that the Examiner no longer reviews performances and exhibitions, but he did offer advice on how to get arts events noticed.
His pointers included:
4. Once you have sent your media release be prepared for follow-up calls from news organizations. Media is a fast paced business and if you don’t have what the writer is asking for, a different story may catch a reporter’s attention. 5. Know the five ‘Ws’: What, Where, When, Who and Why? Be prepared to answer these questions. 6. Make sure your contact information is up to date and that the contact is available after the media release has been sent.
“No, a review must be impartial and the reviewer cannot be a member of the organization.” A disconnect is a must when it comes to advertising and articles. The Examiner does run sponsored content but it will clearly be listed as a paid advertisement.
The Electric City Culture Council would like to thank Kennedy Gordon for his informative and honest talk. He encouraged the crowd to contact him directly and to email events to firstname.lastname@example.org