Name: Bob Buderi
Web site: www.xconomy.com
Preferred e-mail address: firstname.lastname@example.org
Bob Buderi is editor-in-chief and founder of Xconomy, a Cambridge, MA-based news site, with bureaus in San Diego and Seattle. The site covers the IT, life sciences, energy, and venture capitalist industries.
He speaks with PRWeek about the importance of covering innovation during the recession, why PR pros are a part of the community it covers, and why telling what's behind the story is important.
PRWeek: Who reads Xconomy?
Bob Buderi: We call it the innovation community, which is the entrepreneurs, the innovators, university professors, venture capitalists, the C-suite, and technologists at big companies. [It also includes] the people around them, the service providers, [such as] the accountants and the law firms.
PRWeek: What do you see as the big stories for the site in the next few months?
Buderi: The big, ongoing thing is the strategies that companies in the high-tech sector are using to get out of the recession. We've seen a real bifurcation in company response to that – maybe 15% to 20% are stepping up to try to differentiate from the pack [and] be aggressive, and the rest are hunkering down, if not [in] total collapse. So, it's how people deal with that. That's the big, overarching story, and there are a lot of great individual stories inside that.
PRWeek: The site has gained a reputation for writing longer, thoughtful stories. Why do you think this type of reporting is still important?
Buderi: We're this kind of hybrid incarnation of new media that's on an open-source blogging platform. We blog, but we also write like a newspaper or a magazine… We have no space constraints, other than what's a good story. We can run 2,000- or 3,000-word stories that we would have to cut in a magazine, or we can write one- or two-paragraph stories, or we can write in different voices. So, we just think it's not taking full use of the medium if you can't tell the story in whatever length it needs to be told… Our audience profile is off the charts, and I think that's because we tell a smarter, deeper story.
PRWeek: What's your interaction with PR pros like?
Buderi: They enhance the community, and they are a part of the community. We like to work with them. They point us to great stories, and they help us find speakers for our events. It's a great partnership and, as a small staff, we work really hard to get advance notice of things. We always honor embargoes. If we have a couple of days, it enables us to cover something that we wouldn't be able to cover with a couple hours' notice.