B2B: from garrulous to glamorous

"Garrulous" B2B magazine journalists are being offered a "a touch of glamour" by embracing new media, the PPA conference online seminar heard.

Property Week editor, Giles Barrie, welcomed the new skills that web journalism gave editorial teams. He said: "One thing I like is the TV side of things, the best reporters are presentable and garrulous and it's a really good thing for the B2B person to get experience on these live broadcasts you can do.

"We have had people go on proper television over the years and sent people on courses for that. And I think it's a tremendous new string to B2B journalists' bow, who might have been pigeonholed before, in proving they can broadcast. It adds a touch of glamour to their job too."

Media Week editor Philip Smith said that publishing had entered a new area with all the technological processes such as video and podcasting. He said: "This is going to challenge the skills of these journalists like never before; not all of them are natural broadcasters."

But he added: "The best journalists are flexible anyway, and they should be able to adapt their style of writing to the personality of the magazine, and now the web.

"Although the guidelines are more sophisticated, the journalists are more capable than ever of meeting them and reflecting the personality of the magazine online."

The team of B2B editors, who also included Accountancy Age editor Damian Wild, said challenges for the industry included how to make online ventures such as podcasting profitable and how to divide staff resources between the print and web editions.

Reed Business Information's editorial developmental director, Karl Schneider, who chaired the seminar, said: "I sometimes flick between two possibilities. One is that the relationship is one of two friendly supportive siblings with one in reality more successful; on the other hand, I think it's sometimes like a relationship between father and usurping son — with patricide on the horizon."

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