Key Advice Blog

Listening is key

Posted on: 19/06/2009

As the newspaper industry continues to struggle with their digital persona, many web staff are found outside the decision making circles. There is no doubt digital is here to stay, and will have a big impact on the future of the media. Talking to staff  who use the Web has to be their first port of call. A couple of rays of light are finally showing up.

The Digital Britain Report has announced the appointment of co-founder Martha Lane Fox to the role of digital inclusion champion. As a business person who has built, developed and modeled her web presence on public  feedback and service demand, maybe she can bridge the gap and take print media to ‘the other side’ .

The public will  have their voice heard on the ‘no changes to media merger issue’. This is good. Merging media is not the only solution to the current problem – and may not be the best. Ten years ago, when media websites first launched nation-wide, competitors shared a website for a region or county – not believing they could do it single-handedly. Times have changed. And the managers, directors and decision makers need to adopt the popular North American philosophy of ‘thinking outside the box’ to draft their own plan for the future. Listening to users must be incorporated into this process.

A Trinity Mirror paper was presented with a fblueprint for the future from staff, it seems unsolicited. Newspapers must involve and listen to staff when making their plans. To ignore this essential resource is at their peril. To have such a wealth of knowledge, ideas and desire to make things work at their fingertips, and not take advantage of it, is like going hungry when you have food in the cupboards.

Visit Biz24’s blog post “Tips to Push Your Business – Blogging, Marketing and Listening” at

The industry based on interviewing people, listening to people and reporting what people say needs to turn this core component of its business on itself – and talk to and listen to the people who work inside their organisations.


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