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Blogs, other online sources more than ok to use

More than 8 of 10 business journalists (84 percent) say they have used or would use blogs as primary or secondary sources for articles, according to the "2007 Arketi Web Watch Survey: Inside B-to-B Media Usage of Web 2.0" by marketing consultancy Arketi Group, reports MarketingCharts. The survey sought to understand the uses of technology by B2B journalists covering various industries, including their views of bloggers as sources: "In an era exploding with user-generated content, social media, and Web 2.0, it's important for those in business-to-business communications to understand how journalists are using technology when it comes to reporting news," said Mike Neumeier, principal of Arketi Group. Below, key findings from the Arketi study. Technology Tools Used by Journalists Not surprisingly (since the survey was conducted online) all respondents (100 percent) said they rely on the internet to help get their job done:
  • One-quarter (25 percent) said blogs make their job easier, and 18 percent said instant messaging makes their job easier.
  • 97 percent said they enjoy using new technologies, and nearly one-third (30 percent) said they use some type of instant messenger for professional communication.
  • 60 percent of journalists said they spend more than 20 hours a week on the internet.
Asked how they use the internet…
  • 98 percent said reading news
  • 97 percent said emailing
  • 93 percent said finding news sources
  • 89 percent said finding story ideas
  • 72 percent said reading blogs
  • 67 percent said watching webinars or webcasts
Finding Story Ideas, Contacting Sources
  • Some 90 percent of journalists said they turn to industry sources for story ideas, an equal number (90 percent) cited news releases and nearly as many (89 percent) said they tap into public relations contacts.
  • More than three out of four journalists (79 percent) report finding story ideas on newswires, while 74 percent said from Web sites, 72 percent said from other media outlets and 54 percent report blogs spark story ideas.
  • All journalists surveyed (100 percent) said they prefer working with known sources via email, while 91 percent prefer telephone and 77 percent said in-person. Interestingly, one-quarter (25 percent) said they prefer instant messaging with known sources.
  • Regarding unknown sources, nearly all those surveyed (98 percent) said they prefer emails, and 80 percent said phone contact with an unknown source is acceptable.
  • Almost all journalists (98 percent) said they prefer to receive news releases via email from companies they know, and 93 percent of business journalists said they prefer to receive news releases via email from companies they don't know but are in industries they cover.
All respondents said they viewed information offered online by business news organizations like the Wall Street Journal, Business Week and Bloomberg as credible; 92 percent said they viewed information reported online by national news organizations like the national TV networks, wire services and newspapers as credible. Others sources of credible online information according to the journalists surveyed:
  • International organizations (89 percent)
  • Government agencies (85 percent)
  • Corporate websites (85 percent)
  • PR professionals (77 percent)
  • Activist websites (41 percent)
  • Blogs (41 percent)
  • Politicians (35 percent)
  • Chat, message boards (18 percent)
An overwhelming majority of journalists (92 percent) said their online publication is allowed to "scoop" their print publication. The journalists surveyed wrote primarily for a print publication, but the majority also contributes to their organization's website (68 percent). MarketingCharts has more findings from the study, including on their use of corporate websites and corporate influence on employees' blogging.

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