When I was a trainee music journalist in the early 80s, I was tasked with interviewing new bands and artists. Some of them – like Spandau Ballet and Duran Duran – were media-savvy before anyone talked about being media-savvy. They understood the importance of crafting an image. But many of them were either stuck in the belief that their music should speak for itself, or they hated having to do … [Read more...] about Dear creatives: marketing is part of your job description
Most people who knew me when I was a rock journalist in the 80s would probably agree that I stood out. There weren’t that many women working for the music papers at that time – and certainly not women who wore bespoke black and red latex dresses accessorised with six-inch stilettos. But despite my maverick beginnings, as I gained experience as a journalist I gradually became more sensible and … [Read more...] about How to stop fitting in and start doing your own thing
As I’ve written here before, I’m a strange beast: a journalist who doesn’t find self-promotion easy. But I realise I have to get over myself, not only because I need to market my services but also because I've started teaching creatives how to tell captivating stories that will hook the attention of the media. So it's unfair of me to ask them to do something I don’t want to do myself. At least … [Read more...] about How I successfully pitched a story idea to The Guardian
I should be able to do this. I’m a journalist. I’ve been a journalist for nearly 40 years, for God’s sake. I know how the game is played; I’ve been on the receiving end of countless pitches and worked with many PRs in different industry sectors. So why do I find it so hard promote myself? Even though I know what works and what doesn’t work? I know how to write. I’m also a public speaking … [Read more...] about I’m a journalist. So why do I find it so hard to promote myself?
This morning I walked past a shop selling the kind of clothes that I like. A sign in the window was advertising a 50 per cent off sale. I was tempted. In fact, if the window display had featured something that caught my eye, I may have gone straight in. But the fact that it didn’t meant I paused, and thought better of it. I don’t need any new clothes. In fact, my husband has … [Read more...] about The dangers of believing you’re a consumer