Name: Michelle Guerin
Phone: 619.342.3155 ext. 14
What kinds of stories or interviews are you looking for?
The opening of new lifestyle businesses, such as boutique shops, restaurants or nightclubs. Human interest profiles on stand-out industry people, such as local designers, chefs and performers. Newsworthy events coming to town, including charity events, fashion shows and DJ concerts. For DiscoverSD.com, I look for stories and interviews that show a fresh, young side of San Diego lifestyle.
What are some top trends you’re seeing within your industry beat? What do you predict for 2010?
I see more celebrities coming to town. As the San Diego nightlife and entertainment scenes continue to expand, more celebrity hosted events and big name performers will come to the Gaslamp. On DiscoverSD.com, we are obsessed with the transformation of Gaslamp nightlife, and I see big things continuing to happen throughout 2010. New clubs, bigger parties, more nationwide spotlight on our growing city as we step further out of LA’s shadow. For NBC San Diego, our schedule for on-site lifestyle videos can hardly keep up with the number of cool events and celebrity hosted parties coming to town.
Do you use social networking professionally or personally? How do you feel about being contacted by PR pros with an idea through your social networks?
Oh yes. As an online publication, it’s great to be able to interact with readers in real time and drive traffic directly to our blogs and event profiles. I use Facebook personally and Twitter professionally, although there really is no separation anymore. I live and breathe DiscoverSD.com. My favorite way to use Facebook is to show off the dozens of new event photo albums we post each week. I appreciate it when PR pros follow my social media campaigns, and I like when their pitches are based on things we’re currently doing. However, I do not like to be contacted on Facebook or Twitter. In my opinion, social media messages are for community interaction and casual comments, not for business. Look at what we do on Twitter, and then e-mail me about it. If I don’t know you well and you instant message me on Facebook with a business idea, consider yourself on my bad list.
What recommendations do you have for PR professionals? What do you like and what turns you off?
I have many great friends in the San Diego PR community, and I couldn’t do my job without them. But, if a story doesn’t fit, take no for an answer. I can only speak for myself, but I prefer to be contacted and pitched via e-mail, so I can review and respond on my own time. Be considerate of timing and annual trends, and make sure you know what DiscoverSD.com is and what tools we have.
What do you predict is the future of news distribution and consumption?
Online news is no longer the future, it’s the present. For professionals who are on the internet most hours of the day, breaking news hits you over the head from 20 different outlets, including e-mail, newsfeeds and even Twitter feeds. So, why would we then go pick up a paper at the corner store? For lifestyle stories and gossip, there’s something beautiful about a glossy print magazine, but by the time monthly magazines go to print, we’ve already covered their top stories, and then some. With online media, there is no page limit, and we upload new stories and photo albums all day, every day. If you want the latest news and you want it now, online is the only way to go.
Launched in 2006, DiscoverSD is the leading integrated online lifestyle guide to San Diego nightlife, shopping, dining, beauty, hospitality real estate and more. DiscoverSD provides hundreds of new editorial features and business ratings per month, empowering users to make informed decisions about getting the most out of living in and experiencing America’s Finest City. For more information please visit www.discoversd.com.