Yesterday was interesting.
- I was shortlisted for Pensions Personality of the year – thanks to all who voted
- Pension Play Pen was shortlisted for technology solutions provider of the year – please vote here
- Another media awards event , the ABI media awards, passed without any recognition of blogging.
It strikes me that items 1 and 2, the expression of personality and the dissemination of thought leadership through new technology, are the major advances social media have brought to journalism. 500 people subscribe to this article, 3,500 more will have it and it will be viewed by 20,000. Perhaps 1000 will read this article through.
These numbers are small in the context of national circulation, but this blog reaches the places other articles cannot reach.
There is no advertising to obstruct the view, no pay wall and you have no obligation to like or dislike the post. It is a non-commercial activity that exists independently of my employers First Actuarial and Pension PlayPen, or the providers and clients with whom we interact.
I do not use Headline Money, any PR firm and we do not use any creative agency to produce these blogs. I am not accredited by the National Union of Journalists nor have I ever been paid to write by any third party.
Consequently, whatever influence this blog has, is disinterested and un conflicted . I have yet to change a blog as a result of the occasional threats I receive from aggrieved third parties.
What you read is what I think.
I work with some great journalists from national papers such as the Telegraph, the FT and the Times (who were kind enough to rate www.henrytapper.com one of the world’s must read financial websites). I also work with broadcast media, the BBC, LBC and a number of local radio stations.
But mostly I interact with the 4500 people on the Pension Play Pen Group- my 8500 Linked In connections and the 80,000 people who I share groups with on LinkedIn. There are 3500 people who follow my twitter feed and the blog appears on walled sites such as Mallowstreet and Adviser Lounge.
No Martin Lewis
The focus of this blog and of http://www.pensionplaypen.com is to restore the public’s confidence in pensions (and promote Yeovil Town). There are nearly 1100 articles on hers, almost all my own work. Anyone is free to republish my content.
I do not pretend to be authorative and I am not full-time. The really great financial journalists, Martin and Paul Lewis, Debbie Harrison , John Plender (to name those who spring to mind) are those things I am not, well-researched, measured and consistent over time.
I can only aspire to their standards (and those like them)
My point is different. My blog, and others like mine are now part of the infrastructure that supports pensions. If we stopped, we would be missed. We are the feedback.
At some point, organisations like the ABI and the NAPF are going to have to recognise that bloggers like me are part of the infrastructure of UK financial services.
It took many years for the Edinburgh Festival to recognise that it was the fringe that was keeping it alive. Perhaps it will take a few years less for the likes of the ABI and the NAPF to make the same connection with regards independent bloggers.
No I am not part of the PR continuum, no I do not generate income – yes I am not in your pocket. But the longer bloggers like me sit on the outside, the longer those on the inside will appear as you do, one step removed from today’s news and views.
This article was first published in http://www.pensionplaypen.com/top-thinking