Nic Newman’s Journalism, Media and Technology Predictions 2013 is a must read

I missed this when it first came out but Nic Newman‘s Journalism, Media and Technology Predictions 2013 is a must read.

There’s lots of detailed fascinating insight and analysis with case studies and examples and I’ve shared the executive summary below:

  • The coming year will mark the BIG switch to mobile computing. It will overtake desktop use for news – in turn driving more mobile first media
  • Improving video capability and data graphics will be a major theme for news organisations aiming to engage audiences using better screens and faster connections
  • Live pages, live streams and live workflows become a key focus in newsrooms – with newformats emerging for bite-sized news
  • The phablet is coming – a mix between a smartphone and tablet. Mid sized screens andaffordability will hit the sweet spot for many consumers
  • We’ll see a further deepening of the social revolution across all platforms – accompanied by a growing debate about the implications – privacy, control and all the new skills required to manage it (we said this last year but it is worth repeating)
  • In technology expect big advances in gesture control (LeapMotion), indoor location, 3D Printers – and the beginnings of wearable computing
  • More disruption in banking & finance, retailing and higher education as the Internet revolution begins to bite

While the document is really an analysis of the media and journalism sector it doesn’t take a leap of imagination for PR professionals to recognise the impact the predicted transformations will have on communications planning. There may well be  future post in this – distilling the technology-led disruptions re-shaping the media/journalism space and what it means for PR practitioners. For now let’s just note that Nic’s prediction that at least two UK national newspapers will go behind paywalls in 2013 has already come to pass!

Is McKinsey and Nielsen’s social media division a backwards step?

I saw this story earlier in the week and now Drew B's blogged about the announcement that the media metrics people Nielsen have teamed up with the management consultancy McKinsey to launch a social media division.

Drew's rather positive about the venture, called NM Incite, suggesting that it's "good to see [this] type of advisory coming from the bright sparks
at McKinsey
". I'm rather more skeptical and wonder whether they can offer the level of depth and understanding of the social space as social media and even communications consultancies. Of course, that may not be the primary motivation for McKinsey – rather the lure of lucrative contracts.

Without being able to comment in-depth on McKinsey's reputation at management consultancy I am  suspicious about management consultancies offering genuine communications consultancy. Only last month I was chatting with a senior PR consultant who was lamenting a 'brand strategy' put together by the client's management consultancy.

What I find particularly fascinating about this move is that NM Incite appears to be offering products *as well as* solutions. According to the 'Offerings' section on their website they can provide:

  • Customisable dashboards
  • APIs
  • Tracker reports and alerts

Interesting that as 'social media' becomes more about strategic business consultancy to socialise organisations, the traditional management consultancies are turning to selling widgets rather than knowledge.

It just goes to show that not even the bastions of the global business management empire are immune from disintermediation.