43% of journalists name money as their greatest challenge in 2023

A staggering 43% of journalists claimed that money was their greatest challenge in 2023, according to Medianet’s 2024 Australian Media Landscape Report, with two-thirds of journalists feeling like they are underpaid in 2023.

Journalists’ poor pay reflects the decreasing revenues of media organisations in general. Even publishers who have found new revenue streams – whether through events, clever ad placement strategies, or AI-driven programmatic ads – are still struggling to pay journalists anywhere near the equivalent salary of related professions, such as PR.

They’re not just short on salary, but on time, too. The survey found 31% of journalists found increasing workload as a significant challenge.

Medianet’s 2024 Australian Media Landscape Report

The good news is that PRs can help. If the media are time-poor, PRs or anyone pitching a story needs to take greater responsibility for the information they give the media.

PRs must to do all they can to respect journalist’s time and make their life easier. Be hyper-responsive, include as much information and supporting assets as possible in your pitch, and have case studies or interviewees prepped and ready to go at a moment’s notice.

The report confirmed that there is a lot of movement in journalism. 45% said their job or role had changed in 2023. That means that you need to have strong individual contacts who will hopefully bring you with them when they move.

The survey also looked at the impact of AI.

It found 79% of journalists are concerned about the impacts of AI on the quality of journalism. But at the same time, 74% of journos had not used generative AI or LLMs (large language models) in their work in 2023 – yet.

When AI is an option, bland stories are no longer going to cut it. While this has always been PR best practice, it’s even truer when a journalist could simply create their own average content using AI. So why would they use yours?

To cut through, our stories need to be a huge cut above the capabilities of AI by using personalised approaches, specific bold commentary, unique insights, compelling data, real-world stories, emotional stories, and human case studies – all things AI can’t replicate.

The key takeaway is that anyone pitching to a journalist needs to justify their existence in the media’s inbox!

PRs have an important role to play in supporting journalists with relevant, newsworthy, interesting stories. The next time you’re sending out a pitch, ask yourself: how can I help them tell a better story?

If you’re looking for a PR strategy that helps journalists do better work, get in touch with our team of experienced PR professionals today.

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