Thinking digital: curious minds & movie monsters

Ever wondered how many people in the world are left handed, how virtual reality can prevent car sickness or how data helps build the marvel universe?

More than a week later I’m still processing so many things after the Thinking Digital conference, which has become a legendary tech and innovation event in the North East although shamefully this was my first visit. Continue reading

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The latest from NHS #CommsLeads

extAs a lifelong Newcastle Utd fan and regular tweeter you’d be right to imagine that I’m well used to disappointment and defeat, so it’s nice to start the latest blog with some good news for the North East – I’ve been elected as the new chair of the NHS Providers #CommsLeads Network.

I’m a very regular attender of these meetings and often blog afterwards so I was genuinely pleased (and surprised) to take up the role and follow the excellent Carrie-Anne Wade who has built such a useful national network. Continue reading

10 simple tips for pitching to broadcast media

8441842442_84f6d2deb2_kIn the febrile world of social newsfeeds, real time updates, 280 character soundbites and our obsession with ‘the new’ we can sometimes be guilty of underestimating the power of more traditional channels.

A recent CIPR session on media pitching reminded me that more than 300,000 people watch the regional BBC Look North news every night and that local radio has a unique reach and reliability across communities. Continue reading

Nostalgia, neurosis, animals and other lessons

Albert-camus

The French philosopher Albert Camus talked often of the contraction of living life well in a universe that has no meaning, and that only by recognising the absurd could an individual truly experience freedom.

He would have rejoiced at the average 2019 social newsfeed where the absurd and meaningless seem to have reached their apex. Sadly existentialist philosophy only goes so far for the hard working public sector comms professional, where the more practical and prosaic is probably more useful. Continue reading

An alternative comms reading list: 8 books to change your thinking

16104487418_d70c626f6d_zDoes anyone else keep getting that “the average CEO reads 60 books a year” advert popping up on their timeline?

Now I like a good read but the thought of getting through 60 business books in 2019 makes my blood run cold. In between doing the day job, getting the kids to school and finishing the ironing it’s impossible for most normal humans.

But reading helps offer up some of the best ideas and access to unique, new thinking on the subjects that we’re all grappling with every day at work. Continue reading

NHS lessons on internal comms

It’s clear that the current workforce challenges facing the NHS are prompting deeper and more urgent thinking by comms teams, if the number of sessions devoted to internal comms in the past six months is anything to go by.

A focus on internal communications has been a feature of almost every seminar or presentation that I’ve been to in the last six months as organisations seek to tighten their relationships with employees. Continue reading