State Of Journalism 2022

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The State of Journalism2022Social media habits, reporting strategies,PR pitching preferences and moreA STUDY BY

Research partners2

About this surveyWE SURVEYED 2,547 JOURNALISTS FROM JANUARY 4th to JANUARY 25th, 2022. Role: 64% are full-time journalists, editorial writers or bloggers, 19% are full-time freelance journalists and 12%create journalistic content but supplement their income with other work. Of the 5% that listed ‘Other,’ write inresponses included editorial functions such as editor, blogger and producer. Experience: 32% have been a journalist for 20 years. 25% have been a journalist for 10-20 years. 21% have 6-10years experience, while 5% have 1-2 years experience. Finally, 1% have under 1 year of journalistic experience. Medium: 74% of journalists primarily report in online formats. Of those, 41% report online (with a print edition) and33% report online (with no print edition). From the respondents who selected 'other,’ the most common formatwas print with online editions. Most journalists surveyed produce content in at least one additional mediummonthly. Beat: The average journalist covers 4 beats (this is up from last year’s 3 beats). The most popular industriescovered by survey respondents are Politics, Government and Legal, Arts and Culture, Business and Finance,Energy and Environment and Education.See extended audience breakdown in Section 4.3

Executive Summary Fewer journalists agree that the way companies share information isoutdated—44% this year vs. 61% last year, indicating that companiesare stepping up the way they share information.The average journalist covers 4 beats. Last year, the averagejournalist covered 3 beats.Most journalists surveyed create content in at least one medium inaddition to their primary medium. Online (38%), print (25%) newsletter(17%) and podcast (15%) were the top additional mediums.For the third year in a row, 58% of journalists are optimistic abouttheir profession.Fewer journalists said that CEOs and company PR pros are crediblesources for reporting. However, more journalists find social mediapersonalities (17% vs. 12% last year) and celebrity spokespeople (14%vs. 12% last year) more credible than they did last year.4

1Social media,news consumptionand reporting5

83% say theirwork has beenaffected byCOVID-19How has economic uncertainty related to the COVID-19pandemic affected your work?More stories about COVID-19 and/or health and wellness61%More stories about remote work and/or virtual communicationThat’s a decrease from last year’s86%.34%Layoffs/furloughs at my outlet(s) have increased my workloadThe number of journalists coveringmore stories about the pandemicand/or health and wellness has alsodecreased slightly from last year’s65%.21%COVID-19 has not affected my reporting17%Less news to cover as companies postpone new releases17%More stories about the Great Resignation15%Personal layoff(s) have meant less work in general14%

For the third yearin a row, 58% ofjournalists areoptimistic abouttheir professionAre you optimistic about the journalism 2%-42%-42%201920202021202250%0%-50%-100%Source: The State of Journalism 2019, 2020 and 2021

OptimisticJournalists coveringFashion & beauty,Religion are themost optimistic65% of journalists covering Religionand 64% of journalists coveringFashion & beauty are optimistic abouttheir profession.On the other hand, the mostpessimistic groups are Weather (48%)and Crime (46%).PessimisticAgriculture59%41%Art & culture58%42%Automotive59%41%Business & finance58%42%Crime54%46%Education58%42%Energy & environment57%43%Entertainment58%42%Fashion & beauty64%36%Food & dining60%40%Health & wellness62%38%Politics & ce57%43%Sports55%45%Tech & telecomm.58%42%Travel61%39%Weather52%48%

Around a third ofjournalists sayaudience trust intheir coverage hasincreasedDo you feel that your audience’s trust in coverage of yourarea of journalism has increased or decreased in the past year?47%50%32%25%0%-25%-22%-50%IncreasedIt’s the sameDecreased

IncreasedHealth & wellness,Agriculture andReligion said trustincreased the most39% of journalists covering Health &wellness, Agriculture and Religionsaid that audience trust in thecoverage of these industriesincreased.Journalists covering Weather andRegional/Local said audience trustdecreased (29% and 28%respectively).DecreasedIt’s the sameAgriculture39%25%36%Art & culture31%23%47%Automotive35%21%43%Business & ergy & environment34%22%44%Entertainment31%22%47%Fashion & beauty33%23%44%Food & dining32%19%48%Health & wellness39%22%39%Politics & %42%Science34%24%42%Sports32%27%41%Tech & telecomm.36%24%40%Travel30%21%49%Weather31%29%40%

In general, where do you go first for your news?Most journaliststurn to onlinenewspapers orTwitter first fornews57% of journalists get their newsfrom online newspapers ormagazines, down from 58% in2021. 18% get their news fromTwitter (up from 16% last year).Online newspapers and magazines57%Twitter18%Print newspapers or magazines7%TV/cable news4%Other (please specify)3%Radio3%Facebook2%Other social media platforms1%Podcasts1%LinkedIn0%TikTok0%

More journalistsvalue Twitter,LinkedIn,Instagram, Redditand TikTokWhat social network is most valuable to youas a d to last year, morejournalists value Twitter (77% vs.76%), LinkedIn (24% vs. 23%),Instagram (18% vs. 15%), Reddit(9% vs. 7%) and TikTok (4% vs. 1%

Journalists plan to spend more time on Twitter,LinkedIn and YouTube this yearDo you expect to spend more or less time on the following social networks this okReddit8%17%2%TwitterMoreLinkedInNo differenceYouTubeLessInstagramSnapchatI don’t use this platform and don’t plan to use it this year13

60% of journalistsconsult a companyʼssocial media in theirreportingWhen reporting on a company,I consult the company’s social mediaStronglyagree14%Stronglydisagree 8%Disagree7%Compared to 2021, more journalistsconsult with a company’s socialmedia: 60% this year vs. 58% lastyear.Agree 46%Neitheragree nordisagree25%

More journalists aretracking coverageon social mediathis yearLast year, 62% of journalists saidthey track how many times theirstories were shared on socialmedia—this year, 64% do.Do you track how many times yourstories are shared on social media?No 36%Yes 64%

What makes a story jectconnected toa trendingstoryContainsan image orinfographicExclusive and/orsurprising dataEasilylocalized/maderelevant to yourtarget audienceContainsa videoBrevityInvolves arelevant socialmedia influencerQuotes froma companyspokesperson16

2Event coveragein 202217

53% of journalistsplan to attendmore in-personevents in 2022Compared to 2021, do you plan on attendingmore or fewer in-person events in 2022?More 53%The same 33%Fewer 14%

Sports, Fashion &beauty and Politics& governmentjournalistswill cover moreeventsTech & telecommunications andAutomotive had the highestnumber of journalists that saidthey’d attend fewer events.Compared to 2021, do you plan onattending more or fewer in-person events in 2022?MoreFewerThe sameAgriculture47%Art & culture52%Automotive52%19%Business & y & environment46%16%38%Entertainment49%16%35%Fashion & beauty55%Food & dining49%Health & wellness48%Politics & 6%17%37%Sports56%Tech & 8%

46% of journalistssay an event goingvirtual doesnʼtaffect theirlikelihood ofcovering itHow likely are you to cover a virtual event in 2022?More likely tocover a virtualevent 34%Less likely tocover a virtualevent 21%An event going virtualdoesn’t affect my likelihoodof covering it 46%

Sports and Food &dining journalistsare less likely tocover virtual eventsThose who said they’re more likelyto cover virtual events include Tech& telecommunications, Science,Health & wellness and Energy &environment.How likely are you to cover a virtual event in 2022?MoreFewerThe sameAgriculture35%18%47%Art & culture35%21%44%Automotive35%23%Business & y & environment38%18%44%Entertainment38%21%41%Fashion & beauty32%23%46%Food & dining28%27%45%Health & wellness38%Politics & ience38%18%Sports31%26%Tech & 7%45%18%47%44%43%21%41%

62% of journalistsprefer Zoom forvirtual eventsWhat platform do you prefer to use for virtual events?Corporate YouTube9%Zoom62%Other (please specify)9%

Top 10 events journalists plan to cover in 20221. UN Climate Change Conference (COP26)2. World Economic Forum3. World Conference on Climate Change and Sustainability4. TED5. Comic-Con6. SXSW7. Government Social Media Conference8. E39. Future of Finance10. TechCrunch Disrupt

3Media relations:pitchingpreferencesand more24

44% of journalistsagree or stronglyagree that the waycompanies shareinformation isoutdatedThe way most companies share information withthe media is outdatedStrongly agree14%This marks a significant decreasefrom last year, when 61% ofjournalists agreed or stronglyagreed.AgreeThe jump indicates that companiesare stepping up the methods theyuse to share information.Strongly disagreeThose that agreed said companiesare not tech-savvy and/orinformation is not validated.30%Disagree54%1%

Strongly agreeJournalists coveringTech & telecommsmost likely to agreethat the waycompanies shareinformation isoutdatedAutomotive (58%), followed by Food& Dining (57%) and Health &Wellness (57%) are the most likelyto disagree.AgreeDisagreeStrongly disagreeAgriculture10%32%55%Art & culture13%30%56%1%Automotive12%30%58%1%Business & 2%2%Energy & ion & beauty18%26%55%1%Food & dining13%29%57%1%Health & wellness13%28%57%2%Politics & h & %1%3%

60% of journalistssay theirrelationship withPR pros is mutuallybeneficialDo you generally see your relationship with PRteams and people at PR agencies as:A partnership8%This year, more journalists call theirrelationship with PR pros a partnership(8%) vs. last year (6%).Mutually beneficial, but not quite a partnership60%Antagonistic, but not inherently a bad thingFewer say the relationship isantagonistic (16% vs. 18% last year)and fewer say it’s a necessary evil (16%vs. 17% last year).16%A necessary evil16%

59% of journalistsare just as likely torespond to pitchesas last yearCompared to a year ago, I am:More likely to respond to pitchesThere was an uptick in the % ofjournalists who are more likely torespond: 23% this year vs. 22%last year.23%Less likely to respond to pitches18%Just as likely to respond to pitchesFewer say they’re less likely torespond: 18% this year vs. 22%last year.59%

More likelyJournalists coveringReligion, Fashion &beauty more likelyto respond topitchesJournalists covering Automotivehad the highest % of those whosay they’re less likely to respondto pitches.Less likelyJust as likelyAgriculture25%19%56%Art & culture25%15%60%Automotive16%23%60%Business & ergy & Environment23%22%55%Entertainment24%15%60%Fashion & beauty27%15%58%Food & dining20%16%64%Health & wellness26%18%57%Politics & %58%Science22%21%57%Sports26%14%60%Tech & telecomm.21%21%58%Travel24%17%59%Weather23%22%55%

Poorly timed andimpersonal pitcheswill still get ignoredWhy do you immediately reject otherwise relevant pitches?Bad timingSimilar to last year, bad timing wasthe leading reason for journalistsrejecting pitches (24%), followed bylack of personalization (22%).Under ‘Other’ numerous journalistssaid they will reject irrelevant,off-topic, not localized and/orpoorly written pitches.24%Lack of personalization22%Confusing subject line15%Too lengthy13%Large attachments3%Other (please specify)23%

1:1 email still #1for pitching, 5%hate phone pitchesa little lessOn which channels do you prefer to be pitched(Select all that apply)100%1:1 email remains the top channel PRpros use to pitch journalists.94%50%17%Interestingly, more journalists saythey prefer phone pitches: 15% thisyear vs. 10% last year.Under “Other,” Whatsapp was apopular write-in 100%1:1 works(e.g. Facebook,LinkedIn)Other(pleasespecify)

Most journalistswant to receivepitches early in thework weekOn what day of the week do you prefer to receive pitches?(Please rank from 1-7, with 1 being your most preferred day)123MONTUEWED4THU5FRI6SAT7SUN32

67% of journalists prefer to receive pitchesbetween 5am and 12pmWhen is the best time for you to receive a pitch?40%34%33%30%20%12%11%10%5%5%Late afternoon3pm-6pmEvening6pm-11pm0%Early morning5am-9amLate morning9am-12pmOvernight11pm-5amEarly afternoon12pm-3pm33

Half of journalistsreceive 1-5 pitchesdaily, or 5-25 perweekJournalists covering Fashion &beauty receive the most pitches:23% get 6-10 and 10% get 51 pitches weekly.How many pitches do youreceive on an average business 56-1011-2041-5051 34

51% of journalistspublish 5 or morestories per weekThe number of journalists publishinga high volume of weekly stories (8 ormore) is growing: 33% this year vs. 31%last year.Journalists covering Weather publishthe most stories: 43% publish 11 stories per week.About how many stories do youpublish in an average week?40%29%30%23%18%20%16%10%10%3%0%012-45-78-1011

80% of journalistssay a quarter ormore of theirstories originatefrom pitchesAbout what portion of storiesyou publish originate from pitches?19%59%NoneA quarter15%5%1%HalfThree-fourthsAllThis is down slightly from last yearwhen 81% said that a quarter ormore of their stories originatedfrom pitches.The % of journalists who said‘A quarter’ of their stories camefrom pitches fell from 61% lastyear to 59% this year.The portion who said ‘Half’grew from 14% to 15%.

68% of journalistsprefer pitches lessthan 200 wordsWhat’s your ideal pitch length?50%45%40%The outliers? Food & dining andTravel have the most journaliststhat are OK with pitches that aremore than 200 words (35% and34% respectively).30%23%21%20%9%10%1%0%1000 words300-1000words201-300words100-200words 100 words(2-3 sentences)37

90% of journalistssay at least 1 followup email isacceptableHow many follow up emails are acceptable?10%49%31%5%4%01234 Compared to last year, journalistsare open to more follow ups: 31%are open to 2 vs. 30% last year.Additionally, 5% of journalists areopen to 3 follow ups this year vs.4% last year.

85% of journalistsare OK with a followup within a week ofthe initial emailHow long after an initial email is it ok to follow up?33%52%11%4%1-2 days3-7 days1-2 weeksMore than 2 weeksSimilar to last year, the majority ofjournalists say it’s acceptable tofollow up within one week.Slightly more say it’s OK to followup within 1-2 weeks (11% this yearvs. 10% last year).

Fewer journalistsfind CEOs, companyPR pros credibleWhile the majority find academicsubject matter experts credible (84%)fewer journalists named CEOs (66% vs.74% last year) and company PR pros(50% vs. 55% last year).Do you consider the following to becredible sources for your reporting?Academic subject matter experts84%CEOs66%Company PR professionals50%Agency PR professionals36%Bloggers13%Social media personalitiesOn the other hand, more journalistsfind social media personalities (17% vs.12% last year) and celebrityspokespeople (14% vs. 12% last year)credible than they did last year.17%Celebrity spokespeople14%Self-appointed subject matter experts12%None of the above6%

79% of journalistsare at leastsomewhat morelikely to cover astory if offered anexclusiveIf offered an exclusive, how muchmore likely are you to cover the story?50%29%8%1%13%Much morelikelySomewhatlikelyNo morelikelyLess likelyIt reallydependsThere was an increase in the % ofjournalists who say they’re muchmore likely to cover a story withan exclusive: 50% this year vs.46% last year.

4Profile of ajournalist:demographics,popular mediumsand more42

The averagejournalistcovers 4 beatsPolitics, government and legalSports49%Art and culture19%Science32%Energy and environment19%Travel29%Business and financeLast year, the averagejournalist covered 3beats. The mostpopular beat coveredby surveyrespondents wasPolitics, Governmentand Legal.17%Other (please specify)29%Education16%Food and cal (city, state)15%Weather26%Crime13%Religion26%Health, wellness and fitness12%Fashion and beauty24%Technology and telecommunications8%Automotive21%6%

83% of those surveyed are full-time journalistsWhich of the following best describes you?I’m a full-time journalist, editorial writer or blogger64%I’m a full-time freelance journalist19%I write some journalistic content, but supplement my income w/ other work12%Other (please specify)5%44

How would you categorize the scope of your 36%Trade6%45

Where are you caNew (pleasespecify)46

How old are you?0%Under 2024%20-3028%31-4019%41-50How long have you been a journalist?29%Over 501%5%16%Under1 year1-2years3-5years21%6-10years25% 32%10-20years20 years47

Online (with a printedition) is the mostpopular mediumJust under three quarters ofjournalists primarily report in onlineformats. Of those, 41% report online(with a print edition) and 33% reportonline (with no print edition). Fromthe respondents who selected'other', the most common format wasprint with online editions.Which medium do you primarily report in?Other (please specify) 6%Podcast 1%Print (with noonline edition)5%Newsletter 1%Radio 3%TV 9%Online (with aprint edition)41%Online(with no printedition) 33%

74% of journalistssurveyed producecontent in anadditional mediumAfter online and print, newsletters(17%) and podcasts (15%) are themost popular.Of the 5% who selected 'Other', themost popular mediums were socialmedia, videos, and blogs.In addition to your primary medium, do you alsoproduce content at least once a month in any of the ePrintNewsletter PodcastRadioTVOther(pleasespecify)I do notproducecontent inany othermedium49

Thank you!Journalists: Showcase your best work, analyze news aboutany topic and measure the impact of your stories—for free.Claim your free portfolioPR pros: Muck Rack’s Public Relations Management (PRM) platform enables PRteams to find the right journalists for their stories, send customized pitches, buildmeaningful relationships with the media, monitor news and quantify their impact.Learn more

news 57% of journalists get their news from online newspapers or magazines, down from 58% in 2021. 18% get their news from Twitter (up from 16% last year). In general, where do you go first for your news? Online newspapers and magazines 57% Twitter 18% Print newspapers or magazines 7% TV/cable news 4% Other (please specify) 3% Radio 3% Facebook 2%

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