Lightning chats are 30-minute video chats in which we (and by that we mean anyone!) discuss a shared challenge, brainstorm ideas for a project, or learn more about a case study. Peruse our archive of chats (including video replays) on Gather. You can also subscribe to a lightning chat calendar on Google calendar or on iCal. Here's what's coming up:
UPDATE: The panelists have so much to share that we extended the chat to one hour. Join when you can and leave when you need to! As always, we'll share the notes, slide deck and video recap afterwards.
- TODAY! May 15 at 1 pm ET // Teaching SEO best practices: What are best practices for newsrooms around SEO concepts these days? And what should you do if you're charged with sharing them with the rest of your newsroom? In this chat, we'll learn from:
- Nicole Barton of KQED (and previously of YouTube)
- Adriana Lacy of the LA Times
- Jessica Lee Martin of CityLab
Join us on Zoom at 1 pm ET / 10 am PT for a 1-hour conversation. Click here to add this to your Google Calendar.
Jobs, Fellowships, and Funding
Check out our full list of jobs, fellowships, and funding opportunities on Gather, and let us know what we're missing.
Knight Chair in Audience and Community Engagement for News, University of Kansas: “The Knight Chair in Audience and Community Engagement for News will be a leader in helping media connect with various audiences and will have a keen understanding of emerging trends and demographics related to media use in various markets. The successful candidates also will understand impact metrics, the developing role of public/private partnerships to maintain expertise in the newsroom, and be curious about future collaborations in news gathering and dissemination with students, professionals and the public.” Learn more.
If you haven't joined the Gather Slack community, you're missing out on a lot of brainstorming, advice giving and collaboration. Join here.
- Newsletter stats: We did a re-engagement push for this newsletter last week. And we love transparency here at Gather, so we thought we’d share some data. We sent a “should we unsubscribe you” email to 339 people, asking them to click to stay on the list if desired. 28.3% opened (95 people) and 12.7% clicked to stay on the list (43 people). The remaining 296 were taken off the list. How does that compare to typical efforts? Here’s what we heard from members of the #newsletters Slack channel.
- Getting to know each other: Besides our weekly member introductions in this newsletter, a quick way Gatherers learn a bit about each other happens on Fridays on Slack. We share highlights from our week, either personal or professional. Last week’s thread included a member’s 40-mile bike ride.
- Hot Read: "A reporter declined to reveal his source. Then police showed up at his front door with guns." by Eli Rosenberg at The Washington Post. (This is the Gather community's most-shared story on Twitter this week. Look for other 'hot reads' in Friday's Nuzzel newsletter and in the #reads channel on the Gather Slack.)
Meet Em Okrepkie, this week's Featured Member.
Name: Em Okrepkie
What you do: I’m a member of the growth team at The Christian Science Monitor. I work to reach new audiences through social and search channels. I also spend a good deal of time using email to reach readers through both newsletters and one-off communications.
Why you’re on Gather: Inspiration! I’m in awe of the work others are doing, and I usually open the Slack channel when I’m looking for a mental boost. I appreciate the shared language and understanding everyone seems to have around engagement work. I’m not exclusively in the editorial space, but I do think it’s table stakes for a business team to understand how their journalism serves their community. If we’re not engaging with our readers and using their feedback to determine our next steps, we’re doing them and ourselves a disservice.
One thing you want to learn on Gather: I’ve been thinking a lot recently about the best ways to involve readers in conversations about Monitor journalism. I was a member of the team that created our first Facebook group, and I think the Monitor has a ton of room to grow in creating feedback loops that help both our journalism and our readers.
One thing you have to share on Gather: I started out at the Monitor working almost exclusively on email campaigns, and I love geeking out about newsletters and email strategy. I spearheaded a popup newsletter last fall, and I learned a ton in the process. I’m always looking for an excuse to talk about building audiences or producing newsletters from a tactical and technical perspective, which isn’t the most glamorous but is definitely an important part of the process.
One thing about your work that gets you especially pumped up: The prospect of reaching new audiences and then deepening their relationship with our journalism is thrilling to me. A great day at work means I’ve talked to readers about how Monitor journalism has had an impact on them, and it’s exciting to think about how I can be a part of increasing that impact.
Who or what inspired you to get into this work? I grew up in a house where my parents read the newspaper every morning. I always knew I wanted to be a part of the news business, but I didn’t always know what that would look like. I spent a summer working at the International Center for Journalists, and that’s when I realized I wanted to be a part of providing support for quality journalism. I’m in the process of getting my MBA because I’d like to be a bridge between editorial and business teams as independent news organizations work toward financial stability.
Would you rather ... work in chaos or quiet? Chaos. I’m always in search of a bustling coffee shop to spend the day, and I’m a fan of excitement. I have to admit, though, I just invested in noise-cancelling headphones. I guess I love to work in chaos as long as I can listen to Lizzo while I think.
Links for ways to connect with you.