- About half of U.S. journalists feel they could not do their work without social media.
- Most journalists have good relationships with their PR contacts, although fewer than half of the journalists consider those contacts reliable.
- Email is the preferred form of contact between journalists and PR professionals, with social media a close second.
These are some of the results of the 2016 Global Social Media Study, conducted by Cision and Canterbury Christ Church University (U.K.). The survey focuses on how journalists and media professionals use social media for their work.
Here are some of its findings from the U.S. respondents.
Journalists believe social media is most important for publishing and promoting content, and for interacting with audiences.
Most respondents see social media as “important” or “very important” for most of their work. More than half (58 percent) rate social media as “very important” for interaction, and nearly two-thirds (62 percent) feel it is “very important” for publishing and promoting content.
Facebook and Twitter are the top platforms, but most journalists use a variety of social media platforms in their work.
More than half (51 percent) use three or more different types of social media to get ideas and information. Most (68 percent) U.S. respondents use at least three types of social media to publish and promote their work. Nearly half (47 percent) use four or more.
Professional and demographic characteristics affect the choice of platforms. For example, younger journalists are more apt to use audio-visual sharing platforms like YouTube. Older journalists use professional networks like LinkedIn more.
About half of U.S. journalists feel they could not carry out their work without social media.
Most (66 percent) of U.S. journalists think that social media has fundamentally changed their roles. At the same time, 54 percent feel that social media is undermining traditional journalistic values. That is an increase of 5 percent from the previous year. The more time journalists spend on social media, the better they feel about it.
Most journalists feel they are more engaged with their audience because of social media, but few regularly make use of user-generated content.
More than three quarters of U.S. respondents (78 percent) feel social media enables them to better connect with their audience. However, few use audience-generated content.
Most journalists have good relationships with their PR contacts, though less than half consider them to be reliable sources.
The majority (79 percent) of respondents report positive relationships with their PR contacts, and 42 percent consider PR professionals and news releases to be main sources of information. However, respondents consider industry and professional contacts (51 percent) and experts (47 percent) more important sources.
About the Survey
This is the fifth year that Cision and Canterbury Christ Church University have done this survey. More than 2,000 respondents participated, 300 from the U.S.
I’ve only touched on a few highlights regarding U.S. journalists. The report also includes findings from international media. I encourage you to read it in its entirety.