I’m a Medium fan girl (InkHouse clients, I know a few of you are rolling your eyes in recognition). For those thinking, “What’s Medium?” it is the writing platform headed by Twitter co-founder Evan Williams. And it’s becoming a big deal. I was thrilled when Obama and Malala Yousafzai posted there recently and ratified my obsession. Medium has arrived.
I’ve been testing different types of Medium posts. Some I’ve cross-posted from our InkHouse blog, others I’ve posted directly to Medium and then syndicated elsewhere (LinkedIn Publishing, media outlets, etc.), and some I’ve posted only to Medium. The analytics on my personal tests show that content posted just on Medium has performed best within Medium itself. But this is far from scientific, so I sought hard facts and found them on Medium’s Data Lab.
In the past year two technology focused media platforms have emerged as – what Sam Whitmore calls – “agenda setter” publications. Transforming tech journalism and thought leadership, The Information founded by Jessica Lessin and Backchannel started by former Wired and Newsweek reporter, Steven Levy, aim to provide in-depth, meaningful industry analysis and news. Lessin even argues, The Information provides what has been previously lacking – “news that takes a stand supported by facts.”
Both Backchannel and The Information were founded on the premise that tech news has been repetitive, cookie-cutter articles with flashy headlines and little substance. Levy says he does not want the “flavorless stump” of the muffin; he wants “only muffin tops.” He does not want to follow the industry agenda; he wants to set it.
Last week in interview between a C-level executive of a Fortune 500 and a reporter at a major daily newspaper, the reporter got on the phone and started out by saying, “Remind me what we are talking about today.”
Cringe. PR person summarizes subject to be discussed. Exec acts polite and pretends to roll with it. Reporters asks spontaneous stream of questions. Call ends. Exec yells at in-house communications manager. Client yells at InkHouse. All asking the same thing:
“How could THIS happen?”
THIS… after multiple conversations, emails and background materials exchanged between the reporter and the PR person.
I was recently at an event where a company was asked what makes them special. They talked about how they have a slide – like what you might find in a playground – connecting two floors of their office.
Sounds like fun, except not if you’re in a skirt and heels.
But the comment got me thinking about what truly makes a difference in the workplace for employees.
While there’s nothing wrong with slides, ping pong tables, or even scooters (which we enjoy here at InkHouse)… there are other more important reasons why one chooses to work someplace and more importantly, why they choose to stay:
If you’re reading this blog, you probably don’t need a lesson in the power of social media to bring your message to the masses. However, with a relentless timeline of real-time tweets and Facebook posts, it can be challenging to extract stories and themes.
This is where Storify comes in handy. In case you’re not familiar with it, Storify is a Web platform that allows you to curate and publish social information from around the Web into one central location. Its beauty is it allows you to aggregate a collection of social elements from many voices and then publish them as a singular story. If you’re in need of an example of this platform (and a laugh), enjoy the best case of viral marketing I’ve seen in a while: The Storify of a guy live tweeting a couple’s breakup on the roof of his apartment building. We’ve used Storify several times here on the InkHouse blog and reporters often use it as reporting tool, assembling differing points of view on a topic, like this one by Matthew Ingram – or for gathering a selection of social posts from a news event, like this one from Andy Carvin.
This morning we were proud to attend the Boston Chamber of Commerce Breakfast where InkHouse was named one of the top 10 small businesses in Massachusetts.
It’s a rare honor to be recognized alongside a true sampling of the Boston economy with the likes of b.good (the winners – their speech started with a hilarious story about how their food was terrible 10 years ago when they got started, but I think it’s pretty awesome now), Island Creek Oysters, Boston Organics, Nic+Zoe, Feldman Land Surveyors, Cambridge Sound Management, Golden Cannoli Shells Company (we can’t compete with sugar!), PaintNite3 and one of our long-time clients, Localytics (congratulations Raj!).
Today in the Holmes Report, I wrote a guest post on how large companies and the media often have a lion and hyena relationship—natural born enemies who fight over the spoils of newsworthy information. It’s a relationship that grows increasingly cynical as companies get bigger and bigger, when it could and should be much more symbiotic.
One very powerful thing that has actually made this adversarial relationship even worse is the advent of content marketing. We see more and more companies who have never been comfortable with traditional public relations embrace content marketing like a lifeline, thinking that controlled storytelling through contributed posts and the corporate blog is an end run around the perceived risks of media, analyst and influencer relations.
It’s not often that the words “government” and “innovation” are uttered in the same breath, though they shared center stage at Thursday’s “Women Rule: Cracking the Code” event here in San Francisco. The morning conference, which was sponsored by POLITICO, focused on the lack of women in the tech industry, as well as the relationship between Silicon Valley and Washington, which can be described as complex and unique at best.