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You are News
by Andy
August 21, 2009

Sadly and nostalgically, newspapers and magazines continue to get smaller and smaller.  And we all know why.  The Internet has changed our reading habits from hard copy format to computer screens.  It has also trained us to get our information for free, resulting in fewer printed pages because fewer eyes are reading traditional media.  Fewer eyes mean fewer advertisers.  And fewer advertisers mean staff cuts.  Here in Atlanta, the Atlanta Journal Constitution is a shadow of itself not only in size and content, but in staff.  There are just not enough writers and editors on-staff to search, research, and publish all the information that needs to be shared with their readership.

So you would think consumers have fewer options to glean our news and information, right?  Hardly.  We all know the opposite is true.  News is available everywhere, all the time, all over the World, which has lead to an information dissemination free-for-all.

Information is coming from everywhere – from respected outlets like MSNBC, CNN, and Fox to the questionable like i-Reporters on their telephones, ghost-Twitterers from India, Perez Hilton, and more.  The days of Walter Cronkite and Peter Jennings are clearly over.

So how can companies do a better job of inserting their perspective into all this?  Be your own media outlet.  As Sergio Zyman says, “if you don’t control the dialogue, the market will do it for you” – and I doubt you’ll like how it treats you.  Effective and strategically managed outreach programs provide the insights desired by the category and often supply the content and expert commentary needed by those remaining, over-burdened category writers.

The more valuable you become to the category, the more purpose your products and services have in the marketplace.  Key is to strategically manage your relevancy efforts across the media that matter, stay active, stay targeted, and stay current.

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