Eighteen months out of Syracuse, Business Insider's Maya Kosoff is a modern tech reporter. She covers startups and venture capital on her own terms; there's nothing she is obliged to write, no story that will land her in trouble if she fails to post it. Like her BI colleagues, Maya produces lists, exposés and scoops -- none of which are fertile vehicles for PR.
Tech Insider arrived this week. Required reading is EIC Gus Lubin's post on his team's mission: to plumb the converging worlds of tech, science, innovation and culture, telling "the stories that matter to everyone" in tech, science, innovation and culture "with text, video, photo, and audio."
There's a cool new way to measure the influence of top tech reporters and the sites they work for. Techmeme last month augmented its Leaderboard to reflect how frequently a reporter's work is linked to by other sites and cited in social media posts. Who's atop today's list? Mark Gurman. Know him? (He's got zero followers on LinkedIn so no one on there knows him.)
You send us lots of rejected contributed content, asking what went wrong. Sometimes we can spot a path forward, but it's heartbreaking to hear that "the client wants it written this way" or "this has already been approved." That's why this week we studied nine sets of contributed content guidelines from top edit targets and packaged what we think is their most valuable advice.
What is it like to be a reporter at Business Insider? "Everyone is kind of their own CEO," says west coast bureau chief Matt Rosoff. There's no daily copy quota, as there is at Pando Daily and was at Gigaom. Every reporter is free to chase a big story that takes weeks to report if the story is big enough. However, Matt adds, "there's an expectation that we're not going to be missing any news."
[Learned lots this week in meetings with editors and subscribers. Here are this week's notes from the field. Hope you enjoy. Please let us know if you like this format and how we can make it better.]
First, the newsy stuff. Business Insider is close to launching a consumer tech publication that will offer news, reviews and analysis with the 'tude we have come to expect from BI.
Clouds, smartphones and wearables have transformed the world of financial services. Banks and brokerages battle crowdfunded lenders and robo advisors, using M&A, partnerships, FUD and every other weapon available. “Financial services companies are at the center of the tension between productivity and innovation and security and compliance,” Box CEO Aaron Levie told TechCrunch's Ron Miller.
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."
We've never seen PR pros more pressured to deliver "Tier 1" business coverage than we did this year. Not to pander, but we know how difficult this can be: clients rarely give you what you need. Often, though -- and as we see in the skyrocketing number of SWMS valet requests -- PR pros often spend too much time finding targets for an idea that's weak in the first place.