Pitching Security Stories: Mission Impossible?

Never before have we seen PR pros struggle so mightily to land security coverage in business publications. Considering that businesses will spend $76 billion on cybersecurity in 2015 and $155 billion by 2019 (say Cybersecurity Ventures and Gartner), you'd think business editors might care to address where that money might be spent. Yet they don't. "I think there are lots of reasons why, not the least of which is that security journalists have become crime reporters," says a veteran security PR pro, who asked to remain anonymous. 

Re/code Finally Debuts Enterprise Events

Re/code has announced the Code/Enterprise series, the company's first foray into enterprise face-to-face events. The debut takes place Apr. 21 in San Francisco, the second on Sept. 29 in New York. Re/code is starting small. The onstage program will run only a couple of hours, bracketed by "cocktails and networking." Tickets cost only $175. If this year's enterprise events do well, says senior editor and (now) event producer Arik Hesseldahl, Re/code will consider launching a multi-day, high-ticket event in 2016.


Profile: Carmel DeAmicis to Re/code

Just as the Andreessen Horowitz SxSW party was winding down, Carmel DeAmicis walked into the room, spotted Re/code co-founder Kara Swisher, walked up to her and introduced herself. Kara pounced. "I know who you are," she said. "I can't talk now... but have you ever considered Re/code?" Recalls Carmel: "I was in final negotiations with Business Insider... but Kara stole me away at the last minute with her Kara power."

Coverage 'Backdoors' at the WSJ

On Mar. 31 Wall Street Journal technology editor Jonathan Krim will interview two startup CEOs (from Kiip and Locket) on stage at Hotel Adagio in San Francisco. Topic: Lessons and Pitfalls from Young Founders. Could your clients have handled a broad topic like that? Couldn't it be them up there instead? Probably yes. Had you heard about this pitch opp? You might have. It's not secret, just in the shadows. Amid unprecedented pressure for agencies to deliver "business press," coverage backdoors in the big titles have become more important than ever.

Profile: Farhad Manjoo, NY Times

Eight-year-old Farhad Manjoo left South Africa with his sister and parents in 1987, bound for a new life in southern California. He spent his college years among the gorges of New York's Finger Lakes, studying economics and editing Cornell's student newspaper. Upon graduation, Wired gave him his first tech edit job just as the (first) tech bubble burst. Farhad rode it out, eventually freelancing for top-tier titles and authoring a book about truth.

Profile: Mariel Myers, CNET Video

Interested in visual storytelling? Take a trip inside the mind of CNET senior news producer Mariel Myers. Mariel represents the kind of influencer you'll encounter more and more. More than that, it's the way she thinks. "I can use words, sounds and pictures to tell a story, which is a really powerful thing," Mariel says. "I work to make stories visual. First, is the story worth telling? Then, it's how do you tell it visually?"

Guest Post: Pitch Advice from a Veteran TV Producer

[In 27 years with NBC News, Mike Fomil has covered everything from hurricanes to Presidential campaigns. His last assignment: consumer and tech news. After leaving NBC on good terms, Mike now does freelance field producing and consults to PR firms looking to better engage with journalists. In this contributed piece, Mike lays out how PR pros helped him get his job done. The technique can be applied by any PR pro, senior or junior. --Ed.]

Tech Edit Tragedy: Gigaom Folds

Gigaom shut down last night. What the hell happened? Gigaom gambled with a brave business model and lost. It hired only proven, expensive talent. It chose not to chase web advertising, opting instead for high-margin paid research and F2F events. Too few businesses bought the research. Gigaom couldn't scale its events overseas. During its final seven months, Gigaom apparently operated without a CEO. Time ran out.

Coming Next Month: Bloomberg Businessweek Design Conference

It'll cost you $750, but you might want to consider attending the 3rd annual Bloomberg Businessweek Design Conference set for Apr. 28 in San Francisco. From a PR standpoint, you might be able to buttonhole journalists from Bloomberg's news and broadcast operations as they interview and report, principally for the print/tablet Bloomberg Businessweek design issue due in May.

Kim Nash Joins CIO Journal

Kim Nash this week joined the WSJ's CIO Journal as senior writer, after five years at Baseline and more than 20 at IDG's Computerworld and CIO. Taking the WSJ job was "not a difficult decision whatsoever... I'm excited and honored to be here," Kim tells us. "I have a lot of longtime friends at IDG. I know a lot about the company and feel emotionally attached to it... but I can tell you I am thrilled to be here."

Profile: Issie Lapowsky, Wired

Staff writer Issie Lapowsky carries a big load at Wired; she typically writes more than once a day and when a big Facebook or Google story breaks, it's often Issie who has to chase it. That said, she's always on the hunt for constructive stories to tell. Her work often gravitates to doing-well-by-doing-good stories. She also writes quite about education, as she did at Inc.

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SWMS Special Report: Design

Even before the Apple Watch arrives, "design" has come to dominate the hive mind. (The latest evidence: this week's 16,628-word New Yorker profile of Apple chief designer Jony Ive.) Wearables, car tech and IoT -- three of today's top tech trends -- all owe themselves to design. Smart VC firms are hiring designers-in-residence. Yet editorially, the rise of design is easy to miss. 

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Journalists are leaving media brands every week. Read the fruits of 16 confidential interviews with journalists now working at tech brands or PR agencies, and five interviews with the executives who hired these journalists.
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