NMA: News Media Crucial for Government Comms

News media represents a unique and powerful proposition for central Government to communicate effectively with the public and should not be bypassed in favour of less effective platforms, the News Media Association has said today.

Responding to Modern Communications Operating Model report from the Government Communications Service, the NMA points to the “high levels of engagement people enjoy with news media” as a key reason for central Government to communicate through  news media.

The report, which reveals that central Government employs a 3,650 “communicators,” asserts that the “declining business model” of news media “offers the opportunity for Government to produce more ‘direct-to-consumer’ creative content.”

The report adds: “The opportunity is not so much about government pushing native content, rather about GCS creating fully-fledged media production teams, sensitive to the nuances of each channel and audience.”

Lynne Anderson, NMA deputy chief executive, said: “Far from being in decline, the news media industry is reaching bigger audiences than ever before across print and digital platforms. The high levels of engagement people enjoy with news media represents a significant opportunity for central Government to communicate with the public in a highly effective way.

“Instead of seeking to bypass news media, the Government should be looking for ways to work with the industry to ensure its messages reach people who are most affected by its policies.”

The aim of the report is to look at the “principles for improving communications team capability, structures, skills and resources.”

It says one of the aims is to build a “core cadre” of officers with “new skills to respond to the huge  opportunities presented by an increasingly  networked society, and also to meet budget reductions.”  

“GCS will establish or nominate a team of expert marketeers, who can be deployed across departments to assist/advise communications portfolio  leads with the launch of any large-scale campaign,” the report adds.