At an exclusive Gorkana, Cision and PR Newswire media briefing event, Christian May, editor of City A.M., explained why the “optimistic newspaper” takes a different approach towards corporate and financial news.
May, whose background is in communications and PR, was hired as editor of City A.M. just over 12 months ago; his first newspaper role.
The decision was characteristic of the newspaper’s identity as a “risk-taker”, said May at the Gorkana, Cision and PR Newswire event. He explained how he too has made unconventional hiring choices since joining the title, the outcome of which is a more diverse team.
Among topics favoured by City A.M. are, according to May: cyber security/crime, property and mid-sized deals (such as AIM floats). He also said that fresh data is useful, and that, at the moment, everyone’s views on Brexit are of interest.
At the Media Briefing event, May also announced City A.M.’s plans to launch two new magazines: One on luxury travel (in January) and one on food and fine dining. The newspaper’s current portfolio of magazines includes: Bespoke, Bespoke Living and Money.
Here are a few more anecdotes from the 14 September event, hosted at 1 Wimpole Street and chaired by Philip Smith, head of news and content at Gorkana:
City A.M. likes “good news”
The newspaper likes to cover good news and success stories, said May. It also likes stories about individuals. Unlike, perhaps, other financial papers, May suggested, City A.M. is, “more interested in the people behind the deals.”
— Beth Leslie (@bethanygrace92) September 14, 2016
The print paper is here to stay
For some people, City A.M. is a part of the morning routine, May said, and for that reason, the print paper is here to stay. However, the paper also has a digital team who take the early morning shift. This ensures that, by the time the print paper is out, news that has come to light since midnight (when the physical paper goes to press) has been posted to the City A.M. website. The print paper is however, according to May, “the most up-to-date print paper you will find.”
"The newspaper will never go away, it's so integral to our commuters, it'll never be just a website" #CityAMmeets
— Metia Fintech (@MetiaFintech) September 14, 2016
City A.M welcomes commercial content
The paper has launched a third party content platform, City Talk, which allows brands to produce content and publish it directly onto the newspaper’s CMS. May said: “It’s not news, but it is expertise, and it is insight.” He argues that this approach actually encourages transparency because the commercial content does not, in any way, purport to be editorial.
— Eulogy (@Eulogy_London) September 14, 2016
And it would like to host more videos
According to May, the paper does not necessarily have the means to create its own video content, but it would like to publish more video. It is therefore looking to receive fully-formed video content from PR professionals.
— Sophie Broom (@SophieBroom) September 14, 2016
City A.M is very close to its readers
“We feel like trade press because there’s little difference between our patch and our readers,” May said. He describes the paper’s readership as well-informed and vocal. City A.M.’s, “Tight geographic and demographic patch,” ensures that its readers also have an influence over the content of the paper. They are, for example, quick to point out if a mistake is made in the daily crossword.
- You can find out more about upcoming Gorkana events here.