Digital Summit: Huffpost UK editor says having valued brand on social media 'massively important' for news outlets

Having a brand that “breeds loyalty” on social media is “really important, because that’s where the audience is”, Huffpost UK editor-in-chief Polly Curtis has told Press Gazette’s Digital Summit today.

The former charity media director, who joined Huffpost this summer, said it was important for newsbrands to have a voice that “cut through the noise” on social media.

Speaking as part of a panel on the digital news ecosystem, she added: “To be able to get people to recognise the value of your brand on social is really massively important.”

From left: Press Gazette editor Dominic Ponsford, Reuters Institute Digital News report author Nic Newman, Enders Analysis director Douglas McCabe, Trinity Mirror digital editor-in-chief Alison Gow and Huffpost UK editor-in-chief Polly Curtis

Also on the panel at the conference, hosted at News UK’s headquarters in London Bridge today, Trinity Mirror’s digital editor-in-chief Alison Gow said the news industry needed to “get smarter at monetising our audiences”.

She said Trinity Mirror’s digital revenues were at about 10 per cent, which was not sufficient to support its operation.

She added: “Within the newsrooms themselves people are aware of it. It isn’t isolated. Newsrooms do understand that we need to have partnerships and close working with our advertising colleagues.

“One of the areas that we are looking at more and more is editorial information that’s of use to people – like help me live my life stuff – which also plugs in to advertisers.”

Panellist Nic Newman, former BBC strategist and author of the Reuters Institute Digital News report, said: “The news industry doesn’t really have a consumption problem… The real problems are in monetistation and the issue of disaggregation.”

Press Gazette’s Digital Summit is hosted by News UK. The company’s chief operating office, David Dinsmore, has warned that the press must fix its ‘broken relationship’ with the online platforms or face the end of independent, edited news.

Picture: James Young/Press Gazette

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