Why Knight’s Jennifer Preston Moved Her Focus to Engagement Metrics

In 2009, when the New York Times was looking to hire its first social media editor, it knew it wanted to tap someone with deep reporting and editing experience. In that way, Jennifer Preston was a natural fit: she’d been a reporter and editor at Newsday and then the New York Times for the past 25 years. One thing about her qualifications for the job, though, seemed a little strange to other social media editors of the time. “I did not have a lot of experience with these tools,” Preston says. “When I took the job, I didn’t even have a Twitter account.” Preston is now vice president of journalism for the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, where she oversees Continue reading "Why Knight’s Jennifer Preston Moved Her Focus to Engagement Metrics"

How Emma Carew Grovum Uses Metrics to Guide Editorial at The Daily Beast

Start reporting for a local newspaper and work your way up to the big city. It’s a story as old as journalism school, but around 2010 social media gave it a particular twist, like it did to so much of what it means to work in a newsroom today.

Emma Carew Grovum

Back then, Emma Carew Grovum was covering local stories for the Star Tribune in Minneapolis. In her downtime, she created social profiles for the East Metro desk and, in her words, taught the “old-school reporters” about Facebook and Twitter, sharing examples of how other newsrooms were using social in exciting ways. Little did she know that those side projects would lead down a new career path and quickly up the management ladder. This month, Carew Grovum started as a product manager at The Daily Beast. After working as the assistant managing editor for the
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How an Early Social Media Editor Moved Up to VP of Branded Content at Time Inc.

Ben Kaplan was fresh out of college when he started as a temp at Sports Illustrated in 2009. As part of the communications team his task was to take charge of the publication’s social accounts, which up until then had been the shared responsibility of communications, editorial, and business.

Ben Kaplan

From those days to today, Kaplan’s career path has jumped back and forth between editorial and business roles with steadily increasing responsibilities. And the metrics and analytical skills he picked up in those first months as a social media editor have served him well at each step. Today, he works as VP for products and operations for The Foundry, Time Inc.’s Brooklyn-based branded content arm.

A first job at Sports Illustrated

When Kaplan started at Sports Illustrated — also a Time Inc. property — his goal was simple: to cram on digital engagement. “I was just trying to Continue reading "How an Early Social Media Editor Moved Up to VP of Branded Content at Time Inc."

How the Early Social Media Editors Embraced Collaboration in New York City

It’s been almost 10 years since the first wave of “kids” had jobs with social media in the title or description. Those kids are growing up — and taking charge. This is the second in a series of profiles of people who got their starts in social media roles in newsrooms and have carried an understanding of metrics into more senior roles. A social media job is often seen as a way to get one’s foot in the door of a newsroom for young people looking to get into journalism today. But like many journalists who began their careers before the rise of Twitter and Facebook, Rubina Madan Fillion got her start at a small paper, as an education reporter at the Gwinnett Daily Post in the suburbs of Atlanta. From there, she went to grad school in New York, freelance work and a graphics editor job in the city.

How the Early Social Media Editors Embraced Collaboration in New York City

It’s been almost 10 years since the first wave of “kids” had jobs with social media in the title or description. Those kids are growing up — and taking charge. This is the second in a series of profiles of people who got their starts in social media roles in newsrooms and have carried an understanding of metrics into more senior roles. A social media job is often seen as a way to get one’s foot in the door of a newsroom for young people looking to get into journalism today. But like many journalists who began their careers before the rise of Twitter and Facebook, Rubina Madan Fillion got her start at a small paper, as an education reporter at the Gwinnett Daily Post in the suburbs of Atlanta. From there, she went to grad school in New York, freelance work and a graphics editor job in the city.

How the News Industry’s Early Social Media Editors Moved Up the Ladder

It’s been almost 10 years since the first wave of “kids” had jobs with social media in the title or description. Those kids are growing up — and taking charge. This is the first in a series of profiles of people who got their starts in social media roles in newsrooms and have carried an understanding of metrics into more senior roles. “My position didn’t exist before.”

Dan Petty

That’s been a running theme for Dan Petty, hired in March to be the first digital director of audience development at Digital First Media. Petty started off as an Dow Jones News Fund intern at The Denver Post in 2009 doing digital production and multimedia, then was hired on and within a year became the paper’s first social media editor. What did the social media landscape look like in 2009? That year then-Twitter CEO Evan Williams and celebrity Ashton Kutcher went
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How ProPublica Defines Success for Engagement Projects

ProPublica has earned more than its share of accolades. Four Pulitzer Prizes in seven years, numerous Peabody Awards, Emmys… name a journalism award, they’ve probably won it. But engagement editor Terry Parris, Jr., has his sights set on one more trophy: a Pulitzer Prize for a crowdsourced reporting project.

Terry Parris, Jr., Adriana Gallardo and Ariana Tobin

I recently spoke with Parris and his colleagues, engagement reporters Adriana Gallardo and Ariana Tobin. The team evangelizes for metrics that have less to do with quantity on social and more to do with high-quality participation — which can begin on social media but develop further through on-site call-outs, forms and (a lot of) email. We chatted about the work the engagement team does to support and create ProPublica’s journalism, how they measure success and why working on engagement at ProPublica is unlike anywhere else.

Continue reading "How ProPublica Defines Success for Engagement Projects"