Tips For New Beats

Top B2B editors last week shared tips on how to get started on a new beat during a Society of American Business Editors and Writers webcast. The best advice? Get out there and meet people, don’t be afraid to ask dumb questions and do write like crazy. Nashville Business Journal editor in chief Lori Becker recommended building sources by at first scheduling short meetings and aiming broadly across the beat rather than deeply into any given company. Crain’s Chicago Business senior reporter Steve Daniels suggested beat newbies do lots of reading (Wall Street Journal, 10-K filings), telephone research and writing. Panelists said that while reporters on a new beat should make clear their expectations for interviews with top executives, PR officials can be helpful, depending on their rank and clout. ~ JC

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