The Economist this week fielded a reader survey that revealed where the 176-year-old publication might be headed. By contemplating the survey questions, PR pros stand to learn much about the Economist's goals specifically, and also about Tier 1 editorial values in general.
Having been around since 1843, The Economist has a finely honed instinct for survival. The newspaper’s current editorial custodians, led by EIC Zanny Minton Beddoes, lately sense disturbing shifts in politics, economics and society. These shifts, The Economist believes, bode ill — perhaps for the newspaper itself.
Phil Kenny oversees data journalism at The Economist. Phil joined the newspaper 15 years ago. Since then, empirically speaking, he has seen it all -- but he hasn't published much of it. Accepting vendor data is "a trap we never fell into," Phil says.
Lean Back 2.0, The Economist Group's marketing blog, is now called Marketing Unbound, renamed to better reflect its mission as a platform for "progressive" marketers in global corporations. Lean Back "was a great title originally but it needed refreshing," says editor Mercedes Cardona.
Re/code may now belong to Vox, but that hasn't stopped PR from coveting placements in Re/code's Voices section. One important piece of good news for PR: Re/code still accepts one-offs. Inc., IDG, Forbes Entrepreneur and other sites prefer contributors who can deliver multiple posts on a given topic. Still others, such as The Economist's Lean Back blog, prefer contributors whose posts consistently deliver strong traffic and shares.
The Economist's Alexandra Suich can write about pretty much anything she chooses. For PR that's both good and bad news. When pitching her, where does one start? "What we try to do is pull together what others might write as individual stories and put together bigger ones," Alexandra tells us. "We need to write about things earlier [than others], and we need to avoid repeating what other people are writing about."
Add The Economist's Martin Giles to the list of tech reporters joining the VC world. Martin yesterday officially joined Wing Venture Capital to "develop deep and actionable insights in core areas of interest to Wing and its portfolio companies." In short, Martin is now private property. We can no longer get access to his prodigious mind for the price of an Economist subscription.