What exactly is the corporate newsroom? How can a newsroom mentality boost your corporate communications? And how do you measure its impact on your business?
These were just a few of the many questions answered at our Aspic breakfast seminar which took place last Friday 13 October.
The backbone of any newsroom is the ability to tell a powerful story, according to Kunal Dutta, Chief Editor for Digital Channels at Shell. As a former journalist he believes the mission of the corporate newsroom, much like its traditional counterpart, should be to produce quality content with a human angle. Under Kunal’s direction, all content produced for Shells’ global digital channel, Inside Energy, must be true, interesting, outward-facing, timely and authentic.
However, creating and distributing powerful stories is not without its challenges. As internal communicators we are thrown all sorts of curveballs – from corporate and legal compliance to stakeholder relations or even just a lack of decent material to work with. So how do we overcome factors outside of our control?
Kunal assured us that we can be both creative AND compliant, and emphasised the importance of developing and maintaining strong cross-departmental relationships to help break down silos. “We need to start by defining the framework of what it is people [employer, employee, and key stakeholders] want from the outset,” he said.
Our second speaker, Premal Spiegel, Newsroom Manager at Mondelēz International, also takes a content first approach. She believes in quality rather than quantity and the need to adapt content across all channels. For Mondelēz International, the result is a more engaged employee base of nearly 100,000 colleagues in five different geographic regions, with consistent and engaging corporate narrative.
Premal also discussed the concept of capability building; setting up a select suite of sustainable tools from the outset to help create, distribute and measure content. On the topic of impact, both Kunal and Premal agreed that measurement is important in analysing where content fits into broader business goals. Collecting qualitative and quantitative data and sharing those stats with key stakeholders will allow everyone involved to start building trust and in turn recognition.
Finally, the main takeaway for people to consider when introducing a newsroom model within their organisation is this: be brave and determined. Create powerful stories and borrow the journalist mindset by asking yourself ‘would I be proud to put my name to this, wherever it appeared?’
For more information about the next Aspic seminar email Nick.Andrews@sequelgroup.co.uk