Meet the Packet Pushers

If you've got deep-tech B2B IT clients who loathe giving interviews to non-technical reporters, you'll love Packet Pushers. Maybe you already do. Based in England and New Hampshire, Packet Pushers describes itself as "a community of IT practitioners & vendors who write, podcast, and help each other as industry professionals."

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Profile: Stacey Higginbotham, freelancer

As promised last week, here is our conversation with freelance writer Stacey Higginbotham, now the author of a weekly e-newsletter on the Internet of Things. [Listen to our 20-minute audio conversation here.] The highlights: Stacey says she will continue to write for Fortune "once or twice a week... as long as they like my pitches."

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Mar. 28, 2016

Former Fortune reporter Stacey Higginbotham last week launched her own email newsletter. It's called "Stacey Knows Things," and to no one's surprise it's focused on the Internet of Things. The first one contained a 362-word lead story (on Nest), a two-paragraph billboard for her 51st IoT podcast, and ten briefs structured much like the one you're reading right now.

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Mar. 14, 2016

[We're back at SWMS HQ this week but head to New York and Boston before March is through. Today we examine some of the topics that emerged from recent face-to-face meetings with you.]

What are coverage trends these days surrounding funding rounds, especially Series B?

"India’s Flipkart in talks to raise up to $1B, likely in a down round," wrote TechCrunch last week.

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Mar. 7, 2016

Our Bay Area trip was fun and informative. As usual, AEs and SAEs struggle to reach reporters who are overworked, arrogant or both. In one particularly heartbreaking story, a senior PR pro (and a fine person, in our view) told us of approaching a well-known reporter at an event, only to see him spot her, turn his back and walk away. There is no excuse for this.

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Feb. 29, 2016

We learn so much when we meet with our subscribers. When did theSkimm become so popular? So many of you asked how to get into it. You could pitch Danielle Weisberg or Carly Zakin, the co-founders... though your odds might be better with writers Avery Carpenter or Kate Preziosi. All four of these women come from TV or video, so pitch them the way you'd pitch a booker.

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Got a Turnaround Story to Pitch? Careful.

Let's say a PR pro pitches a reporter to write "the turnaround story," the one that goes, "yes, we may have been in trouble, but we're past that now and everything's looking great." The reporter says OK and makes time to report. Likewise, the busy CEO makes time to be interviewed.

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WSJ's Elizabeth Dwoskin to WaPo as SV Correspondent

Elizabeth Dwoskin this week departed the WSJ to become Silicon Valley correspondent for the Washington Post. She starts March 21. Good luck finding anyone who didn't admire her WSJ work covering big data, and most recently, algorithms.

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The Economist's 'Lean Back' is Now 'Marketing Unbound'

Lean Back 2.0, The Economist Group's marketing blog, is now called Marketing Unbound, renamed to better reflect its mission as a platform for "progressive" marketers in global corporations. Lean Back "was a great title originally but it needed refreshing," says editor Mercedes Cardona.

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Fortune's Latest Ventures

Fortune this week launched a new section, a new list, a new daily newsletter on healthcare/pharma, and hired three new editors. Fortune now attracts 20 million monthly visitors, a record. Editor Alan Murray has flat-out transformed this title in just 18 months.

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Important Changes at WSJ

Change has again come to the Wall Street Journal. Global technology editor Jonathan Krim resigned this week. Former Seattle Times and Businessweek reporter Jay Greene came aboard. Meanwhile, the News Corp. division that operates the WSJ and Dow Jones announced an eight percent year-to-year revenue drop.

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Journalists are leaving media brands every week. Read the fruits of 16 confidential interviews with journalists now working at tech brands or PR agencies, and five interviews with the executives who hired these journalists.
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