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Travelling along the zip wire of financial communications

Travelling along the zip wire of financial communications

Stop all the clocks, cut off the telephone, this year’s Digital Trends 2012, a survey of media practices in the financial services industry has been published. With more zip than a Boris Johnson #skyfail wedgie, the research is a bumptious intelligence tool rather like our ‘colourful’ Mayor, as the semantically challenged foreign media seek to explain our razor-sharp fluffy-haired ‘Bonkers Boris’.

While the Mayor was left dangling above Victoria Park in east London, this year’s survey is aimed at seeking some gravity around financial services media and assisting all of those working in the capital’s biggest industry, financial services, navigate the zip wire of positive communications.

Now in its fourth year, the Four Broadgate Digital Trends 2012 is our annual opinion survey of media practices in the financial services industry and this year’s is even bigger and better. As we’ve been researching media trends since 2009, we have four years of comparative data for journalists and for the first time, this year, in conjunction with Communicate magazine, we have surveyed in-house professionals for their views.

With sixty-four questions posed and hundreds of hours of review and analysis from the team here at BM Towers, the findings are essential reading for anyone operating in this evolving media space. As we grapple with an expanding multitude of communication channels, from instagram and Google + to Pinterest, just what should be our priority?

Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the past ten years, social media is a ‘fait accompli’. What’s become clear from this year’s survey is that an ever tighter choreographed dance is required to navigate the likes and dislikes of the UK’s media pack. The survey reveals that often journalists and PRs are not working in sync.

Highlights from the survey include a changing use of Twitter among journalists with a big drop in journalists using Twitter to chat. Just 12% of journalists are using it to chat compared to 47% in 2011. 43% of journalists say they are primarily using it to listen in on conversations and 38% to research stories.

Journalists also want to talk less on the phone as they favour fewer phone pitches. Journalists who preferred to being pitched by phone has fallen from 19% to 8% over the last year. In contrast, in-house PRs prefer to pitch over the phone rather than email.

Social listening is not considered a great priority by communications professionals but journalists are largely positive about interventions from companies through social listening when this corrects a service error. Companies can also learn from the survey and make the most of different channels. For example, LinkedIn is the most important social media tool favoured by companies and journalists also favoured receiving company news through LinkedIn.

To paraphrase our Mayor again, don’t get caught out, get ahead. Pick up a copy of the Four Broadgate Digital Trends survey and get ahead of the game.

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