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The changing ResponseSource community

[This is a revision of a post that first appeared on my own blog in October 2012, with updated data.]

When the ResponseSource Enquiry Service was conceived the idea was that staff and freelance journalists would be the only people placing media requests.

Things have of course changed and journalists no longer have exclusivity over content creation like before – today citizen journalists mingle with corporate authors as well as journalists to generate the content we access online.

And so for a while we’ve been opening up ResponseSource to non-journalists. Perhaps the most interesting group here being bloggers. We also allow subscribing PR professionals to post requests.

The response from the PR community has been mostly positive with many loving the fact that bloggers are sending media requests. However some perceive that these enquiries and those from PR subscribers ‘dilute’ the service (please note the ResponseSource preferences system allows users to filter out these enquiries).

Personally, I believe opening up ResponseSource is the right way forward. While they may vary in quality and influence blogs are undoubtedly important for any brand and enquiries from bloggers represent opportunities for the PR community. And now that part of the PR role is content creation, allowing PR subscribers to post requests reflects the changing role of PR.

Out of curiosity we took a look at the ratio of enquiries from journalists, bloggers and other senders and here are the results.

ResponseSource graph of sender type

Interestingly, staff and freelance journalists still represent the vast majority of media requests – 85 per cent in fact. Bloggers represent four per cent and PR subscribers represent six per cent.

Personally, I’d prefer to see more bloggers making enquiries, wouldn’t you?

We analysed nearly 24,000 ResponseSource requests sent during the year to 2 May 2013. Here are the results in text format:

Sender Type Share
Staff journalist 45%
Freelance journalist 40%
TV/radio researcher/producer 2%
Editorial promotions 3%
Independent blogger 4%
PR subscriber to ResponseSource 6%
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