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Social Media and Career Tips from the Engagement Editor of Newsday and amNewYork

The students in this semester’s Newhouse NYC Social Media class were fortunate enough to hear from Delia Paunescu, Engagement Editor of Newsday and amNewYork, on October 20. As they learned, merging social media with a traditional ‘legacy’ paper can be complicated work at times. Delia shared her best social tips and tricks:

“Anything you have a reaction to should be what you are writing about and what you are sharing.”
Data and prior research will always be necessary to plan strategy and track engagement, but it is important to remember that we are all human. When Delia sees a print article with a really inspiring photo, she knows to post it on Instagram. If she has an emotional reaction, others will too. Sometimes it’s best to trust your gut and run with it.

“On new platforms, you can do whatever you want as long as you have the data to back it up.”
Sometimes it is necessary to take risks and push boundaries, especially when it comes to new social media. People don’t yet know the role of the platform so it is okay to experiment. Snapchat for brands is still a relatively new, and Delia decided to join the party by making an account for Newsday. You might be thinking, “What is a local Long Island newspaper doing on Snapchat?” Delia’s peers were just as curious, but she went ahead and used the platform to interview fans at a Billy Joel concert and it was a hit! The data showing views and new followers proved this. If it wasn’t successful, it would have still been fine because as Delia says, “I will try anything on social media once.”

“You can have the best strategy in the world, but if it doesn’t align with your audience, then it’s worth nothing.”
It is vital for a brand to understand and communicate with its audience. When Delia began her job at Newsday she believed followers would most like to read fun, fluffy articles so she built a strategy plan around this idea. She later found out engagement was much higher on hard-hitting news stories, so she changed her strategy to incorporate this discovery. Flexibility is always essential.

“Networking was the most real life thing I realized was so important.”
We’ve heard it a thousand times: Almost every panelist this semester stressed the importance of building relationships, but it doesn’t hurt to hear it once more to drive the point home. Delia began on the journalistic side of news and never pictured herself leading the social media charge at a newspaper. When a friend referred Delia to a job in social media, she figured why not try something that incorporates both of her passions: journalism and social media. There are so many jobs out there that we don’t even know about, so use your network to find the best fit for you. This is important, people!

Liesel Rickert, Senior Newhouse NYC student and PR major 

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