Breakfast Briefing: The 6 stories PR pros need to know on Thursday morning, 10.6.2016

What chief communications officers are focusing on for the next 12 months.

New this morning: CCO priorities. At the top of the list for chief communications officers are digital communications and employee engagement, according to a study by Weber Shandwick and Spencer Stuart released this morning. Seven in 10 respondents said digital communications is at the top of their to-do list for the next year.

Leading Thursday morning’s news cycle: Hurricane Matthew approaches. Many residents of South Carolina and Florida are evacuating as it nears the southeastern U.S. Airlines have cancelled more than 2,500 flights. Miami International Airport will shut down on Thursday.

Massive cutbacks at Theranos. The embattled blood-testing company is closing its facilities used for blood testing and letting go of 40% of its staff as it changes strategy to make products for outside laboratories. CEO Elizabeth Holmes penned an open letter on the company’s newsroom announcing the cutbacks on Wednesday.

GAO report details government marketing spending. A newly released report by the Government Accountability Office placed federal government spending on marketing services at about $1 billion each year for advertising campaigns and more than $400 million to employ communications professionals. The report found the highest spenders include the State Department, Environmental Protection Agency, and Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.

Latest on Twitter auction. Google isn’t planning to bid for the social media platform, and an offer from Disney is also unlikely, according to Recode. Twitter has informed potential buyers it would like to announce a deal in its October 27 financial results announcement.

On the campaign trail: Obama approval rating hits 55% in CNN poll; Sean Hannity accuses Megyn Kelly of being a Clinton supporter; Republicans worry about down-ballot races after Trump slips in polls; Trump takes credit for Pence’s debate performance; Kaine says his wife scolded him for interrupting too much; VP debate ratings lowest since 2000; Why #ThatMexicanThing matters

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