Reporter Appreciation


By Melinda Kruyer, Kruyer & Associates

The recent losses of David Carr, New York Times, and Bob Simon, CBS News, juxtaposed to the fall of Brian Williams, NBC News, got me thinking about the reporters in my world and how much I value them as collaborators and respect them as professionals. Here is an example.

I learned about water technology when I signed on to lead the branding, marketing and public relations efforts for the new WTIC, the water technology innovation cluster covering Ohio, Kentucky and SE Indiana. The first thing that we did was to change the name to Confluence.

What is it?

  • Confluence is a 501(c) 3 organization composed of federal water laboratories and agencies, universities, large and small businesses, water utilities and regional development agencies.
  • The groups work together to expedite commercialization of needed water technologies, create jobs and spur economic development.

So, new organization in water technology with no burning buildings or celebrities, how do you pitch this?

Key for us was our relationships with great reporters who are gifted storytellers and worked with us to dig deep, boil down the information, sell it to their editors and create compelling stories. And they cared.

Even without caution tape, the Cincinnati ABC and NPR affiliates set a precedent by forming a partnership for a full week of stories on Confluence. WCPO and WVXU, partnered to produce one original content story per day per station for a week with all stories collected on a landing page titled Liquid Assets. We also had front-page coverage in the Cincinnati Enquirer and Cincinnati Business Courier.

Despite squeezed budgets, staff turnover and crazy news cycles, these talented reporters took the time, did excellent work and made it happen. Proving once again that at the end of the day, it is all about trust, integrity and relationships.

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