PRWeek's new approach will make us even stronger

This week, I'm putting aside my usual column about PR industry issues to focus on news from PRWeek.

This week, I'm putting aside my usual column about PR industry issues to focus on news from PRWeek. As a news story on our Web site and in this issue relates, PRWeek will soon embark on a new publishing path.

Starting on May 1, our print weekly will migrate to a new weekly online format, available to subscribers only. Our daily newsletter is being revamped and will be called the PRWeek Breakfast Briefing. Its mission is to deliver all the news our readers need each day, from our own reporting, as well as other media outlets.

We will also produce a monthly magazine, with a fresh design and format, as well as a new focus on providing deeper, more insightful features on key issues facing the industry.

Difficult market conditions have informed the timing of these changes, but not their substance. Over the past two years, we've seen the appetite and needs of our readership changing. Our online readership, like that of many media outlets, has surged tremendously, along with our Web-based products such as the e-newsletters.

The growth online has changed the nature of the stories that are broken on our site, as well as how they differ in print. But the nature of our print newsweekly does not give us the elbowroom for the kind of analysis that truly differentiates each platform.

Since our print redesign three years ago, we have had great success with producing case-study style features, which focus on specific challenges and opportunities facing primarily in-house PR teams. We will retain these quality features in print, as well as many of the best-read elements, like Campaigns. In addition, we will have sections dedicated to corporate PR, marketing communications, public affairs, and digital innovation, providing in-depth coverage of these distinct areas.

At the same time, we are embarking on another significant change in our approach. At the moment, news stories on PRWeekUS.com are ungated and available in full for everyone to read. But from April 27, all the news, features, special reports, and surveys on our Web site will be gated.

The reason for this is simple – our subscribers represent the most engaged, high-level, and committed community in the PR industry. It makes sense that they should be the direct beneficiaries of our efforts to produce the best industry content possible. Publications need the support of those who value their content, and we intend to ensure that our most engaged audience is our first priority.

We remain committed to the work we do each day, highlighting the most important news, trends, people, and organizations in PR. On behalf of the entire PRWeek team, I look forward to working with you as we move ahead.

Julia Hood is publishing director of PRWeek.

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