Media briefing with The Register

4 October 2017

Drew Cullen, The Register’s editor-in-chief, talked about the title’s unique positioning, why it values integrity and how it works with PRs at our Cision media briefing.

Joined by senior reporter Kathleen Hall, he outlined how its teams in London, San Francisco and Sydney collaborate to provide rolling coverage to its audience of 9 million unique monthly users.

With a readership consisting primarily of IT professionals, The Register has earned cult status for its dry, irreverent take on the latest tech news.

In conversation with Philip Smith, Cision’s head of content marketing and comms, Cullen and Hall outlined what this means for PRs looking to work with the brand.

A lot of ground was covered during the briefing. Here are just some of the key points that PRs should know:

1. The Register values its journalistic integrity

Cullen said The Register values its integrity. It’s great when you can cover a breaking tech story early. But the team owes it to their readers to cut through the marketing jargon and investigate things properly.

“We are on the side of the readers,” he explained. “If you just take the tech and say, ‘isn’t that wonderful’ you are doing a disservice to your readers.”

2. You need to know who covers your beat

When pitching to The Register, it’s important to know who to contact. Using a media database like Cision’s will help you to find the right journalist.

“Our country editors select the stories of the day – we inoculate them from marketing pressures,” he added. “The stories they choose are on the basis of what they think are the most interesting or what’s most important.”

3. Good stories aren’t necessarily exclusives

Hall said working with contacts to break exclusives is one of the best things about the job. But the title isn’t just looking for exclusivity. It’s also interested in embargoed announcements and interview opportunities.

“It doesn’t have to be an exclusive,” Cullen continued. “But don’t send someone to a conference and then come to us the next morning and tell us you have a story.”

4. Give the team access as early as possible

With any publication, getting great coverage requires building great relationships. Cullen said the team respects embargoes and likes being told about news in advance so they can cover it quickly.

“It’s always nice to get out of the office if it’s good content,” added Hall. “It depends on relevance. We get so many pitches where you can see that this person has never read The Register before.”

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