Local Media Focus on Community

If you’re reading this, then you’re giving me one more reason to say thanks.
That’s because if you’re reading this then you’re sharing in this message delivered to you by the media.
I’ve lived in big media markets where media are cut-throat and everyone is out for themselves. In this market, it seems people work together for the betterment of the community.
It’s refreshing—especially for the people I work with on a daily basis. These are the hundreds of small business owners that make up the tourism industry.
They rely on the kind of commitment our media managers have made to the community–a commitment that calls on our writers, photographers, and personalities to report on what’s going on with small businesses, non-profits, and the individuals.
It’s also a reminder to all of us to reach out to the media more. Share your ideas with them via email or phone. They won’t always be able to publish, but I truly believe they’re open to hearing what you have to say.
I don’t know of another newspaper that has the executive editor’s phone number on the front page every day. When you call Susan Catron’s number you’ll really get her office phone.
No more has the kindness of our media been more evident than what I experienced last week.
When the Tourism Leadership Council (TLC) wrapped up the Savannah Food & Wine Festival on Sunday, I couldn’t help but notice all of the amazing media outlets that came together to share the story.
It took a host of media to reach the masses. To name a few, this paper shared with editorial and ads. Savannah Magazine showcased with picture and story. Local Palette took the message of our food and wine culture all the way up the East coast.
Our local television stations participated in the events, captured the moments on tape, and helped with early publicizing.
In fact, I’d like to thank one television personality in particular. Jesse Blanco recognized Savannah’s burgeoning food culture long before any other media outlet.
Blanco took a risk when he started the show, “Eat It and Like It,” and it paid off. His show has garnered Emmy nominations and has quickly become the go-to foodie show.
When Blanco and I stood around talking at TLC’s Taste of Savannah 2012, we knew there had to be a way to freshen the 13-year-old event and spotlight Savannah’s food scene. Blanco was influential in making the festival a huge success.
In fact, I would be so bold as to say that the Savannah Food & Wine Festival would not be possible without the kind of media environment that we live in locally.
So, don’t be afraid to reach out to our media. We live in a place where that just might make a difference.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014