Wanted: an editor who can also sell ad space

July 3, 2009

Is this the way forward for journalism? It certainly appears so, according to the job advert listed on holdthefrontpage.

As a senior journalist, I’m astounded.

Astounded that the company are recruiting for a senior editorial professional, but also attempting to lump a full-time sales position into the role too. Would you take this vacancy seriously if you were an experienced, NCTJ-qualified journalist?

Strikes me that there are two positions here, and the firm are attempting to save cash by rolling it into one vacancy. Awful.

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2 Responses to “Wanted: an editor who can also sell ad space”

  1. freelanceunbound said

    Actually, I think the days of the fortified wall between advertising and editorial are long gone. It doesn’t surprise me at all to see this – and I suspect we’ll see a lot more of it. After all, more and more journalists are having to become, in effect, their own publishers and web analysts these days.

    Perhaps more alarmingly, it doesn’t bother me as much. I believe journalism has to break out of its commerce-free ivory tower if it is to survive and engage with the fact that it has to learn how to make money. (I almost said “monetise”. I’m sorry.)

    As a result, I think some of the most important things journalism students need to learn now (apart, perhaps, from how to spell and construct coherent sentences) are business skills. Which may have to include sales too – or at least marketing.

    • bristoleditor said

      Hi Simon

      Many thanks for your inputs – much appreciated.

      Actually, I completely agree with your position and thinking: for far too long, newsroom journos have been removed from the sales process within the business of publishing, and their role as content-providers has evolved more rapidly in the last decade than was possibly thought imaginable.

      I completely relate to the concept of journalists being more commercially-aware: in my last business magazine role, for example, I would regularly liase with key advertisers and clients, ensuring they were on track, and happy with their involvement in the publications I edited. I also assisted in developing relationships between the sales teams and the advertisers on a regular basis.

      However.

      The role I hyperlinked is a new mutation of this – an attempt to make an editor role and new business manager position the same, effectively rolling both roles into one. This, I feel, is a dangerous move, and one which many experienced, commercially-savvy senior editors would balk at.

      Interesting development, nonetheless…

      Many thanks again.

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