MEDIA PROFILE: Latest technology gets put to the test in the pages of eWeek

EWeek isn't just for techies. It covers both the technology and business aspects of enterprise hardware and software. And pitching eWeek simply involves being very straightforward.

EWeek isn't just for techies. It covers both the technology and business aspects of enterprise hardware and software. And pitching eWeek simply involves being very straightforward.

The fact that eWeek still exists and remains widely read makes it a rarity in the world of hi-tech publications. With a circulation of 445,000 and 1.1 million unique monthly visitors to its website, eWeek gives senior IT executives in corporations the latest technology news and reviews to help them make the best buying decisions in building their enterprise infrastructure. "They don't just cover news," says Steve Tomasco, an account supervisor with Magnet Communications. "They also want to know how this technology will work, and what the benefit will be to the customer. I consider eWeek to be the top technology magazine around." What separates eWeek from the pack, says the magazine's director of labs John Taschek, is eWeek's extensive labs section, which thoroughly reviews the latest enterprise and information technologies. "We have a couple of different formats for the labs section," explains Taschek. "We have independent product reviews, where we thoroughly test and review a product before it's announced, so our review is in print when it comes out. And then there's the bigger-picture reviews. We evaluate overall solutions, such as security for wireless infrastructure, and tell you the best way to secure your enterprise." For the reviews, Taschek likes to see innovations, such as the new tablet PC platform. But if a new PC or laptop comes out on the market, eWeek would be more interested in the chip set than the overall computer. "We try to avoid commodity products," says Taschek. "We're not interested in things like video cards. We're focused on the enterprise, how enterprises buy their technologies, and how that technology helps the enterprise. We do things like OpenHack, where we set up websites with a variety of security products, and put out press releases asking people to hack into them. We really want to focus on technologies that offer a solution." One of the latest issues reviewed Apple's new Keynote software (comparing it with PowerPoint), as well as a review of Sun's ONE ID server. The news section isn't exclusively hi-tech news, however. It also focuses on business and government issues that can impact corporations' enterprise decisions. And that kind of coverage, along with the labs section, is what distinguishes eWeek, says Tomasco. The magazine focuses both on IT and enterprise technology and how it works, but also focuses on the business benefits of such technologies. While many trade publications focus either on the technology or the business benefits, eWeek delivers the entire package, so IT executives can understand what they're buying, and business executives can understand why they're buying it. When it comes to pitching eWeek, time is of the essence. For the labs section, the earlier the better. The labs editors and writers need at least a month to test and review a product, and preferably longer - particularly for larger companies such as Oracle and SAP. As for the news section, since the magazine closes fairly early in the week, pitches need to come in very early. The news department won't sign NDAs, says Taschek, though the labs team will. Either way, the best pitches are those that are straightforward. "Just tell us what the product is," says Taschek. "We've seen pitches that are very heavy on background, on what the market is, on what analysts think, and then they bury the actual product at the end. Pitches should be focused, straightforward and simple. The worst pitch I received was an exclusive on a product we had just reviewed." While it may seem like PR 101 to know the media outlet before pitching, Taschek says the best pitches are from those people who are familiar with the magazine and its writers, and who know what kinds of stories to pitch and the exact person to pitch them to. A beat list is not available online, although it will be shortly, says Taschek, adding that people can e-mail the magazine and request such a list. "Their coverage is very customer-driven," says Evan Hoppin, an assistant account executive with Schwartz Communications. "They want customer validation. For a story we pitched, we had a customer who was willing to talk, and technology and business people from the company who were also willing to talk." And think broadly when it comes to customers. For a story on Wavelink, a wireless technology firm, Hoppin asked a hospital in Alabama to provide a testimonial on the company. Both Hoppin and Magnet's Tomasco suggest not only knowing what kinds of stories eWeek wants, but also how to build relationships. "We've brought companies in to talk about trends in general, and build a relationship that will lead to coverage later on," says Tomasco. ----- Contact list eWeek Address 500 Unicorn Drive, Woburn, MA 01801 Tel (781) 938-2600 E-mail firstname_lastname@ziffdavis.com Web www.eweek.com Editor-in-chief Eric Lundquist Executive editor/news Michael Zimmerman Director of labs John Taschek Managing editor Sue Troy Executive editor Stan Gibson Executive editor/eWeek labs Deb Donston Technology editor Peter Coffee Executive managing editor/features Jeff Moad News editor Scot Petersen Deputy news editor Chris Gonsalves Online news editor Rick Dagley Online editor Shelley Solheim

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