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Social Media: Think like your audience

Submitted by on January 14, 2010 – 2:14 pm | 3,290 views

Even during the current media turmoil, journalists need to keep their audience in mind. At the news:rewired social media session, the repeated message rang loud and clear: readers, viewers, and listeners are the key to online success.

The Telegraph’s Kate Day, who was moderating the discussion, said: “Pushing tweets and content on your audience is not going to get you anywhere,” stating that media has to provide in-demand content to its audience.

This idea is not a new one to the media industry.

“The idea is as old as the day is long in journalism, really, you’ve got to think like your readers,” said an audience member

Institutionalised social media style guides were presented as a means for journalists to best communicate with their readers.

Jessica Reed, assistant editor at the Guardian’s Comment is Free outlined how CiF has developed its Twitter style.

“We started the Comment is Free Twitter account using my personal account, but decided that we needed something that better represented our tone,” she said.

Striking a balance between “tending to be a bit chatty” and something more professional, Reed says the CiF’s Twitter style is a work in progress and other media businesses need to define their own tone, as they would in traditional journalistic forms.

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