The One Thing Every Successful PR Pro Does Before Breakfast

  • September 26, 2016
  • Ariel Miller

As public relations professionals, it’s our responsibility to know the news. Before we craft a single email, tweet or post, and perhaps even before pouring our much-beloved morning coffee, you can bet that we’ve at least scanned the headlines.

It’s no secret that being aware of what’s going on in the world helps anyone bring more to the table as a person. Yes, Ryan Lochte or Justin Bieber’s latest public mishaps make for excellent water cooler conversation, but knowing about global events helps us make more informed decisions – and that’s a powerful thing. As PR professionals, it’s especially important for us to be aware of several different areas of the ever-changing media landscape: global, national, and within the verticals that our clients operate.

Why does it matter so much for us to be in the know?

It’s our job to provide counsel. If news is breaking in a relevant space, it’s on us to identify strategic opportunities for our clients to be a part of that conversation. It’s also our responsibility to advise on when to shift strategy and hold on posting on social media, for example, if a major crisis or disaster has occurred, out of respect for those affected. We communicate on behalf of our clients every day, and we need to know what we’re talking about. And to be confident in that communication, we need to know what’s going on.

There’s no shortage of news out there, and it can feel overwhelming to even approach the daunting task of separating the valuable content from the fluff. The good news: there are a number of news curating sites, tools and apps that deliver the content you want and need to see, in a way that’s digestible and catered to your preferences. Here are a few favorites:

E-Mail Newsletters

The Skimm
Founded by two badass ex-NBC producers in their 20’s, the “Daily Skimm” is delivered to 3.5 million inboxes every morning. The appeal? Each section includes a brief summary of the news, a reminder of the context, the latest developments, and the takeaway – all in a digestible paragraph, and often with some humor. It’s the informal and witty writing style that makes this one so unique. Check out this fun interview on how they’ve found so much success with young female millennials.

Quartz Daily Brief
Distilling global news is a formidable task, but the talented folks at Quartz manage to do so beautifully with their morning newsletter. Each email contains an up-front summary of what to watch for that day, followed by a “while you were sleeping” section that hits on anything you might have missed overnight. A personal favorite that closes out the newsletter: the surprising discoveries section, which includes interesting, bizarre bits of information like the lucky goldfish that just received $500 lifesaving surgery.

POLITICO’s Morning Cybersecurity
We represent a number of clients in the security and identity space and rely on POLITICO’s Morning Cybersecurity newsletter to stay on top of all things security, especially from the legislative and global perspectives. Each email contains in-depth background on the latest news and ends with a “Quick Bytes” section that breaks down the biggest stories in the industry with a simple quote and link to the article. In an industry that’s constantly evolving and where breaches make headlines daily, we love this one for staying abreast of threats and opportunities for our clients.

Mobile Payments Today and Payment Week
We’re big fans of the email newsletters from these top payments publications. MPT packages up the headlines of the day, feature articles, and assortment of white papers providing the latest industry research. Payment Week also provides an easy-to-follow format, collecting the top articles on everything from mergers and acquisitions, people on the move, to product announcements transforming the industry.

Mobile App:

A recent favorite of the INK team, Flipboard provides a seamless mobile user experience and uses algorithms to bring the most exciting stories of the day to focus. They also use a magazine-style aesthetic, appreciated by those with an eye for imagery and design, and offer a range of over 30k topics to choose from to make your news-consuming experience incredibly personalized.

How do you get your news? We’d love to hear from you, give us a shout on Facebook or Twitter.

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