Journalism

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Our pick of the best food and drinks blogs in Leeds

Our outreach team here at Prohibition spend a lot of time identifying and engaging with online influencers across a wide variety of fields. Regardless of whether it’s a brilliant product or a less-tangible idea or issue, the end result is organic word of mouth for our clients, a powerful thing with today’s media-jaded consumers.

This month we’ve been busy speaking to food and drinks bloggers in Leeds for a new bar/restaurant we are launching next month. As anyone who’s visited the city in recent months will know, food and drink is now a major draw in Leeds, with more pop up bars, street food vendors and hipster eateries than you can shake a stick at.Guacamole_Pepper-Jack_Burger

As such, Leeds now boasts a huge number of brilliant food bloggers, catering to this exciting scene and giving the latest tips, advice and inside track on what’s happening in the city when it comes to food and drink. Here’s our pick of some of the best:

  1. Gourmet Times Leeds is a digital food magazine that focuses on fine-dining in the Leeds area as well as in your home. The blog is great for a number of reasons, not least because they encourage everyone to be a part of it by using their user-generated-content gateway, allowing readers to add their own recipes, articles and reviews. Their restaurant guide is definitely one not to be missed and is home to all the information you need when it comes to finding a restaurant.
  1. Whip Until Fluffy is written by Lil, a Leeds food blogger with diabetes living in the city. Her blog is a haven for finding yummy recipes and fabulous bar/restaurant reviews and recommendations. Her blog has really simple navigation, and easy cooking tutorials, and is a favourite among those seeking home cooking inspiration or anyone looking for great restaurants around Yorkshire.
  1. Big Spoon Little Spoon is a food and lifestyle blog by Becca, featuring posts on recipes, reviews and diets. If you are looking for inspiration on where to eat out in the city of Leeds then look no further, with reviews of the latest restaurants. I especially like her honesty and candid views.
  1. Jo Blogs. Part of the Leeds food & drink association, this Leeds lifestyle blog specialises in food and restaurant reviews, while Jo’s lifestyle posts make this blog more than just one for the average foodie.
  1. Breadsticklers – “For the love of food”. As well as restaurant reviews, this great blog also features delicious homemade recipes that will inspire you to become a master in the kitchen. Written by Claire, she has been sharing her love of food since 2011, and prides herself on writing about only her own experiences and honest opinions when it comes to reviewing great places to eat.
  1. Amy Liz is a food blogger based in Leeds posting about recipes and restaurant reviews. However, aside from writing exclusively about food, she also likes to blog about fashion and her lifestyle in Leeds, categorising her posts into; Leeds life, recipes, outfits, book club and restaurants, meaning there’s something for everyone.
  1. Eating Owt. It is exactly what it says on the tin… reviews, recipes and ramblings about Yorkshire food. This should be your go-to-guide when it comes to finding hidden Yorkshire treasures and reviews of some of the newest restaurants. If that all doesn’t take your fancy, check out her “All things cheese section” which covers, as you can guess, cheese reviews. Yum!
  1. Angel In The North may predominantly be a Yorkshire lifestyle blog, but her food and drink section is a great place to find reviews of restaurants not only in Leeds City Centre, but in the wider county, with the likes of Le Chalet Tearooms, Cielo Blanco, Bird and Beast, Cafe Rouge and Roxy Lanes reviewed.
  1. Them Apples is a blog about the food adventures of Rich. With absolutely no training when it comes to cooking, Rich takes inspiration from family and friends to create his masterpieces in the kitchen, something he shares with all his readers. His blog covers a variety of issues including eating out, food politics, books and kitchen gear.
  2. A tale of two sittings is written by a passionate Leeds food blogger who is also keen on photography. Originally from Wales, Diane‘s blog posts are a mix of food and drink, restaurant reviews and general lifestyle adventure posts. It’s one to be enjoyed by those who not only have a passion for food, but by those who enjoy finding out more about what Yorkshire has to offer in the way of food and culture.

We know this list isn’t exhaustive, so if you’re not included, please let us know about your blog in the comments and explain why we should all read it.

The Prohibition Seven Days of Social

3256859352_cf35412c5f_zFast moving, always adapting and often controversial, social media is an area where many of us have divided opinions. We like to keep our ear to the ground in the social media world, and as the week comes to an end, we’ve put together a few of our favourite pieces of social media content from around the web that you might not have spotted.

 

  1. “Can we auto correct humanity?”
    by Prince Ea (@PrinceEa)
    By far the biggest hitting and most shared piece of social media content of this week (over three million YouTube views) saw musician and rapper Prince Ea take to the camera in a thought provoking video, assessing how social media and modern technologies are leaving us less connected with our ‘friends’ than ever before.
  1. “ I didn’t actually wake up like this (and other Instagram confessions)
    by Amelia Olson
    We’re dubbed the ‘selfie generation’, but are the self facing snaps just an expression of vanity? In this article, Amelia Olson argues that selfies are not a self-obsessed or narcissistic expression, but that Instagram and other social media platforms that allow us to adjust our appearance through brightening effects and filters only contribute to our appearance insecurities. As does the marketing of makeup brands to encourage the public to look ‘photo/TV ready’.
  1. Fortune’s 55 most influential women on Twitter”
    by Caroline Fairchild (@CFair1)
    Social media is a powerful tool, especially for influencers, and with Twitter being the network of choice for some of the most powerful leaders in government, business and industry throughout the world, maintaining a strong Twitter presence has never been more important. If you’re looking for key female influencers to follow on the network, this is Fortune’s definitive guide to the 55 most influential women on Twitter
  1. “23 Tools and Resources to Create Images for Social Media”
    by Kevan Lee (@kevanlee)
    Social Media is all about engagement, especially when it comes to managing a community for a brand or business. Sharing interesting and engaging graphics is proven, especially on Facebook, to drive reach and increase your audience. However, the success of a post often depends on the make-up and design of an image. This week, our fourth piece of social media content provides one of the most the definitive guides available when it comes to social media image resources.
  1. Teens are officially over Facebook
    by Caitlin Dewey (@caitlindewey)
    We all know the Facebook story, created in a university dorm room, coming from nowhere to take the social media mantel from MySpace and within ten years, it’s arguably the most renowned business in the world. We all love to forecast the future of the most prevalent social network, and in this article, the Washington Post’s Caitlin Dewey looks into the trend for teenagers to stray from the site, in search of more engaging content, from the likes of (Facebook owned) Instagram.
  1. 5 Ways to Use Metrics to Improve Your Social Media Marketing
    by Debra Eckerling (@WriteOnOnline)
    Gone are the days when a brand’s social media absence could be glossed over. In the modern, online age, it’s expected that a reputable brand will possess an engaging online presence. With social media marketing being as important as ever, and most if not all brands now taking on newer and more innovative social accounts, it’s important to keep track of those important metrics that showcase just how effective your presence online is.
  1. YouAreWhatYouLike: Find out what algorithms can tell about you based on your Facebook account.
    by Jennifer Golbeck (@jengolbeck)
    Social media users now number more than 1.4 billion—more than half of the Earth’s Internet-using population. We share a lot of information on social media, but it turns out we are sharing far more than we think. Seemingly innocuous information, when analyzed against tens of thousands of other profiles, can reveal secrets you never intended to share.

 

Photocredit: CC image from Rosaura Ochoa via flickr.

More success for Prohibition!

Will Ockenden (L) and Chris Norton (R)Blog Will Ockenden (L) and Chris Norton (R)Blog Rebecca Wharmby (L), Will Ockenden, Vicki Murphy, Blog Adam Worrall, Chris Norton, Emily Moult (R)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

After celebrating a record year that has seen us double in size and move to larger office we’re now happy to announce the appointment of our new board director.

Following a number of new high profile business wins, including the UK’s largest wholesaler of floristry supplies and artificial flowers, Country Baskets, and national market leader in sustainable housing, Keepmoat Homes, our team has doubled in size to eight.

This includes the appointment of Will Ockenden as board director. Will previously ran the Sydney office of Leeds-based PR and social media agency, Lucre, and prior to that worked at a senior agency level in Leeds. He will be responsible for developing our professional services and B2B offering.

Will is also set to work on commercialising our self-published online student magazine, Student Wire, which is currently the third-largest magazine of its kind in the UK, with more than 60,000 readers. The magazine forms the core of our growing student and youth marketing division.

Other key hires to our team include Rebecca Wharmby, former PR executive at Disney who joins as account executive and Adam Worrall, a professional journalist, as content manager. This month has also seen us relocate to our new, larger office, based in Chapel Allerton.

Our managing director Chris Norton, said of the growth: “The last 12-months have been extremely eventful; we have achieved real success when it comes to delivering non-traditional PR services such as content marketing, online influencer engagement and social media eCommerce services. As such we have experienced strong growth, and have invested heavily in people and technology to ensure we continue to deliver outstanding work. We won the Best Use of Digital Award in November and we plan to enter several of our campaigns this year too. Working jointly with Will, I’m confident we will continue to grow, and offer something genuinely different in a busy market.”

Brief flings: How social media is becoming more short-term

Social networks were never really meant to be long-winded. Twitter has and probably always will limit its users to the SMS-style 140 characters; Facebook cuts statuses off mid-paragraph and encourages you to ‘see more’ instead of displaying the whole thing and TL;DR (too long, didn’t read), a phrase originating well over a decade ago on Usenet forums is now wildly popular on Tumblr, Instagram and just about any other social network.

Nowadays however, things are more ephemeral than ever. Not only are social networks curt, but so are news websites and apps. Look no further than popular mobile apps like Snapchat and Jelly; on the former, communications last for a few seconds and vanish forever and the very format of the latter is based on brief queries and short communications between virtual strangers.

It’s not just apps and social media either. Websites like Upworthy and ViralNova are popular for their short, snack-sized listicles populated with vibrant images and simple explanations. Even more sober outlets post their more extensive articles with the hashtag #longreads often attached to discriminate them from the quick-fire journalism that has become the norm.

This is an important development for PR and marketing, because it means that keeping things brief is more important than it ever has been. A snappy pitch is a simple task for most PR pros, but a snappy pitch that will stick in a consumers mind long after they’ve clicked on one hundred other links isn’t at all.

 

Is the role of the traditional journalist dead? The new Guardian App asks the public “Do you have a story or a tip-off for us?”

From the past two years I have spent studying PR, I have noticed more than ever the increase of organisations using online platforms to do their jobs and speak with their friends.

The development of new technology has meant that we can practically do anything with an iPhone or Android mobile. Mobile network EE has brought us 4G and, if you are not aware, 4G is now five times faster than 3G, which means you can tweet or watch movies from practically anywhere if you want to.

Now, going hand-in-hand with the development of 4G by EE, I have noticed that The Guardian has started the new era in terms of journalism – ‘crowd sourcing’. By downloading the GuardianWitness app on your smartphone, you can now be given the role of a freelance journalist. With your account, you have the chance to contribute to live news stories and browse through other GuardianWitness users uploads. guardian app

Of course, there is a team working behind it, content is moderated before it is uploaded, which makes the platform more exclusive and perhaps a little more credible. The best stories are then selected and submitted onto the Guardian News website.

By creating “Assignments” listed on the app, it lets the user choose the subject they may be interested in and upload a picture or video, and a suitable caption. All of the assignments are focused on varied subjects; the most controversial and hard hitting at the moment has got to be “The cuts get personal” which features one or the users change jar, with the caption “Once offered to charity, now to make ends meet, the change jar is emptied to pay for groceries.”

Finally, we are on to the “Send us a story section”, which asks “Do you have a story or a tip-off for us?” The publication’s intention for this app has now become questionable. Is this just an easy option to getting to the story first? Or is it just an online community for budding journalists to share their experiences and hopefully see their name on its website? In my opinion, it is a bit of both and personally I can’t wait to upload a picture which suits to a subject I find interesting.

Since the launch in mid-April, GuardianWitness accounts are growing rapidly. Overall, it is a great new way to interact with news and growing media sources to find out what’s happening fast in a visual way.

This was a guest post from Holly Guest.

How To Use Social Media For Your PR Pitch

Social media is everywhere and it’s the fastest way to share information, making it the ideal tool for PR pitching. There is so much information on the Web and shared through social media that journalists and bloggers really don’t have to go far for story ideas. This makes it harder for new businesses because they are constantly fighting for attention. We learned that very well at Kitchen Stools Direct.

While Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn are the top social networks, it’s still important to stay up on social media trends and any new social sites that emerge. You can use these new tools to your advantage along with the following tips.

Do Your Research

With search tools like Google, Bing and Yahoo it is very easy to look up the top journalists and bloggers in your industry. A quick search is sure to bring up their social profiles as well as a personal blog or website. The information you find here is important because you’ll be using it to build up a relationship with that person before pitching. You’ll want to keep an eye on their activity so you’ll know what interests them. It will also help you come up with the best way to approach them for your PR pitch.

Connect and Interact

Once you see where they like to hang out and are most active, connect with them by following, adding them as a friend and subscribing to their content. Don’t just stop there though; it’s important to actually read what they’re sharing and interact with them. You can retweet a few of their posts that you find interesting, comment on the content they share on Facebook and leave insightful comments on their blog posts.

Add Other Methods to the Mix

Don’t just stop there. While you’re building a relationship with your prospect, you can still use other online tools to submit press releases and articles. You can also use your own personal blog for free promotion and then share all of those things on your own social media profiles. Hopefully by now you’ve built up a decent following in order to help spread the word. A quick search will help you find a ton of social media tools online for preparing a great PR pitch, that you can use for free.

Make the Pitch

After a couple weeks of genuine interaction, it’s time to go for the goal. Think of a clever way to make your pitch. You could send a tweet or leave a Facebook wall post letting them know that you have some information that might interest them. Try to find a post of theirs that you can respond to asking for permission to share similar information with them. Be polite and don’t expect anything in return, that way you won’t be disappointed if they decline or don’t response back.

If you’ve done your job right, they’ll recognise your name from retweets, Facebook comments and blog comments. So you won’t be a stranger to them and they’ll be more than happy to listen to what you have to say. Just remember, the relationship building process is the most important thing about using social media for your PR pitch. Take on a few prospects at a time and go from there. Before you know it you’ll have a contact list full of great connections and your next PR pitch will be much easier and smoother.

This was a post written and kindly sent to us by Lior Levin who is an advisor to a bar stools and kitchen stools website called Kitchen Stools Direct.

Churnalism is launched to combat cutting and pasting journalism

The last couple of weeks have been interesting because there have been some fascinating developments in the world of media. One of those new developments was the creation of a new site called Churnalism. The site has been created by The Media Standards Trust to basically identify where copied press release text is being lifted from and used. On Chunalism you can do the following according to the news release (whoops I have pasted it sorry):

    • Compare a press release with more than 3 million articles published by national newspaper websites, the BBC or Sky News since 2008
    • See the percentage of a press release cut and pasted into news articles, and the number of characters that overlap
    • See a press release side-by-side with an image of the article, showing which bits have been copied
    • Search examples of “churn” saved by other people as well as collected automatically by churnalism.com
    • Share examples of churn via Twitter and Facebook

This video which accompanied a great write up in The Guardian is brilliant and shows Chris Atkins and the team on a quest to get untrue news stories into the media to show how our hacks are now lifting copy and placing it into national newspapers.

Churnalism In the older days of PR when I started out, the majority of Churnalism would be from the smaller specialist trade titles, who would often also ask us to pay for our articles by adding a colour separation fee. Sadly, those days are still here and with the evolution of the internet and shared content it seems that the newspaper industry still doesn’t appear to be keeping up with online publishing and social media.

However, that said another great revelation came out a couple of weeks ago that pointed out that the majority of Twitter news is still derived from the more traditional news sources such as BBC etc. The article stated:

An analysis of more than 16 million tweets on 3361 topics by HP Labs’ Social Computing Research Group identified just 22 users who were the source of the most retweets while a topic is trending.

And during a trending topic, 31 per cent of all tweets are retweets.

Sixteen of these ‘influencers’ were mainstream media, including Twitter accounts for CNN Breaking News, which has almost 3.9 million followers, Huffington Post, Sky News, BBC World Service and the Daily Telegraph.

I think this is good news because good journalism still thrives its just that the times we are living in means that journalists have to move forward and do more work with less colleagues. I live next door to a senior sub-editor on one of Yorkshire’s largest newspapers and she has told me how tough it is at the moment in the newspaper industry but I don’t need to tell you that.

I think the Churnalism site is a great idea and way of drawing attention to the issue. I also think that the team behind it should produce a white paper or some kind of report on the state of the industry each year, as I would find it genuinely interesting to see if there are real trends in cutting and pasting. One thing is for sure there may be more cutting and pasting but there are still some excellent journalists out there.