May Newsletter

Tags: , , , , , News No comments
featured image



Join us as actor, author and film director Danny Scheinmann (pictured above) leads a free, two-hour masterclass on the importance of storytelling for business on Monday 13th June. Danny will also be signing copies of his latest novel The Half Life of Joshua Jones over bubbles and nibbles.


After Facebook’s recent launch of Instant Articles, we look at how tech companies are becoming more influential in the media industry. As platforms like Snapchat become publishers, what effect will this have on journalism?

Read More

Silicon News – How Tech Companies Are Becoming Media Giants

Tags: , , , News No comments
featured image

Social media and tech giants like Facebook, Google, Apple and Snapchat are moving forcefully into the journalism business by publishing news on their mobile apps. This could be good news for users, who stand to benefit from faster, richer news. Some publishers could also gain extra revenue from more viewers and readers of their products – especially younger ones – on mobile devices.

But there are obvious risks too. With the tech and social media firms hosting the news, publishers will see less traffic and therefore less advertising on their sites. Smaller news producers lacking the resources to produce content for the new platforms could be shut out of the game. There is also the threat that these Silicon Valley mega-firms will move from distributing news to producing it, a move that could crush even the biggest media players. 

Since the advent of the Internet just over 20 years ago the journalism industry has been revolutionised by new technologies such as smartphones and tablets. It has been disrupted by the emergence of major new players such as Huffington Post and Buzzfeed. It has been hit by the slump in advertising revenues and the collapse of newspaper readership. And publics used to being broadcasted to on media companies’ terms have now become “the people formerly known as the audience” in Jay Rosen’s memorable phrase.

Read More

Trainer Profile: Elizabeth Van Den Bergh

Tags: , , News No comments
featured image

Hailing from Flanders, Elizabeth Van Den Bergh is a freelance communication consultant and trainer. At the age of 29 Elizabeth was named a deputy director for BIP Huis van het Gewest and two years later went on to lead her own PR team at Mostra Communications. While team leader she worked on projects such as the European Year Against Poverty and the International Year of Biodiversity. Elizabeth is fluent in Dutch, English, French and Italian. Awarded Competent Communicator at Toastmasters, she is also a trained public speaker.

Read More

March Newsletter

Tags: , , , , News No comments
featured image

Welcome to the first edition of our newsletter, which we hope to make a regular thing. If you don’t already subscribe, please do so here



The latest novel by our storytelling trainer Danny Scheinmann – The Half Life of Joshua Jones – will be published on March 24. Danny, an actor, film director and best-selling author will lead a storytelling masterclass and sign copies of his book in our offices on June 13. More details to follow.



When pitching a story to journalists, email is the preferred medium. A recent study showed that nine out of 10 journalists prefer this method over social media and phone pitches. See our analysis here.



Aside from media training and copywriting, our Managing Director Gareth Harding has been busy producing articles for POLITICO, the EUobserver and others. Enjoy three of his latest posts below.

Dear American Voters: Welcome to Europe
As Donald Drumpf sends shockwaves across the world by upending party politics, read Gareth’s thoughts on how the polarisation of American politics mirrors that of Europe.

Ha Ha Journalism: John Oliver
The ‘Last Week Tonight’ host may deny he is a reporter but his unique brand of investigative comedy proves John Oliver is guilty of ‘committing acts of journalism.’

The EU in Limbo
“The EU is in danger of becoming little more than a glorified think-tank.” Gareth on the tough choices facing the EU.

Media training can be fun – as young politicians from both sides of the Atlantic discovered at this German Marshall Fund workshop

Cypriot journalists meeting EU Commissioner Stylianides at the end of a Brussels study trip organised for the US Embassy in Nicosia


Communication adviser Mathew Lowry wrote a guest blog for Clear Europe on why you should re-think before just reposting your blog across each ‪social media‬ platform.



Clear Europe is delighted to be advising environmental NGO FERN on how to sharpen its message on the importance of forests in combating climate change. We are also working with the European Commission to make its European Development Days conference in June a success. If you need help fine-tuning your messages or making them more media-friendly, don’t hesitate to contact us.



One of our most experienced trainers is John Holland, a former journalist turned media adviser who loves telling stories, listening to stories and being in the middle of stories. Check out his profile below.

Copyright © 2016 Clear Europe. All rights reserved.

Our mailing address is:

Read More

Pitching to Journalists in a Social Media World

Tags: , , , , News No comments
featured image


More than nine in ten journalists prefer to be pitched by email rather than phone and over half rely on social media to write their stories. These are some of the headline conclusions from Cision’s State of the Media Report 2016, which explores journalist practices in the United States and Canada in 2015 and looks at future challenges and trends. 

A key difference from previous years is the way journalists prefer to be approached by communication professionals. 93% of journalists said email was the best pitching platform, while 37% considered the phone off limits.

But what makes journalists follow up the pitch? In the US, 54% said they would pursue the pitch if all the details were included, while 13% of journalists only followed it up if they had a personal connection with the PR person. Surprisingly for a profession enamoured by scoops, only 7.5% considered exclusivity as important.

Read More

Before you Repost it Rethink It

Tags: , , News No comments
featured image

Reposting your blog on LinkedIn and Medium is a no-brainer. Which is precisely the problem – it takes no brains.

Reposting your blog post to platforms like LinkedIn and Medium expands exposure for your ideas, company or whatever else you’re trying to promote, at almost zero added cost.

This is particularly the case on LinkedIn, where the algorithm almost certainly rewards rePosts over Shares to get more content into its rotting walled garden.

So why not do it?

Read More

Trainer Profile: John Holland

Tags: , , News No comments
featured image

John Holland is a former journalist turned media advisor who loves telling stories, listening to stories and being in the middle of stories. A former United Press International bureau chief in Vienna, John was also senior correspondent and Frankfurt bureau chief for CNBC Europe as well as a radio correspondent for CBS News. He has interviewed dozens of prominent figures, including CEOs, prime ministers and the former President of Serbia Slobodan Milošević. John’s career has spanned many continents, with the highlights including reporting live from Baghdad during the first Gulf War, being in Prague when the communist government fell in 1989 and covering the Rwandan genocide. He now helps clients master media interviews, speak more confidently in public and tell better stories.

Read More

Ha ha journalism

Tags: , , , , News No comments
featured image

John Oliver and the rise of investigative comedy

It speaks volumes about the current state of journalism in the United States that it takes a 38-year old British comedian to draw attention to topics much of the mainstream media has chosen to ignore, using investigative reporting methods many of these organisations have long abandoned.

Take Donald Trump. A lot has been written and aired about the bombastic billionaire Republican presidential candidate. But when John Oliver – the host of HBO’s Last Week Tonight – turned his fire on Trump Sunday, he touched a nerve that even other presidential contenders had failed to. After trashing Trump’s business record and denouncing the property magnate turned reality TV star as a “serial liar,” Oliver launched a campaign for the Donald to be referred to by his ancestral German name ‘Drumpf.’ By March 2, the #MakeDonaldDrumpfAgain campaign was trending on Twitter and the episode had been viewed by more than 50 million people on YouTube.

This is the kind of crowd-pleasing trouble-making that has helped make Oliver one of the hottest tickets on American TV. Since April 2014, the British stand-up has used his satirical show to deal with some of the thorniest issues on the planet. Among the topics tackled: Net neutrality, the rise of Islamic State, Europe’s refugee crisis and corruption at the governing body of world football FIFA. Along the way he has interviewed luminaries and heavyweights such as whistleblower Edward Snowden and scientist Stephen Hawking. Read More

Clear Europe is Hiring

News No comments
featured image

Clear Europe is looking for a communication officer to join its small but growing team in Brussels.

We are searching for someone who is media-savvy, super-techy, passionate about communication and enthusiastic about working for an exciting start-up.You would be expected to produce presentations, update the website and social media, promote training sessions, market the company, write and edit copy for clients and attend events and conferences in Brussels. Plus the usual office stuff nobody likes but everybody has to do – invoicing, creating spreadsheets, doing accounts etc.

We are looking for someone with the following skills:

  • Native or near native English.
  • Other languages – particularly French.
  • Strong technical skills – especially social media & Wordpress. Ability to code a big plus, as are graphic design skills.
  • Communication/marketing experience.
  • Business nous and willingness to talk numbers.
  • Photography/camera skills.
  • Interested in politics & knowledge of EU.
  • Excellent writer – in English. Tender-writing experience a plus.
  • Ability to work independently.

This is a full-time position starting as soon as possible. Competitive salary based on experience.

Please send a CV and cover letter explaining why you want to work for Clear Europe and what you would add to the company to: Gareth Harding, Managing Director:

There’s more information about Clear Europe here:




Ten Commandments for Conference Organisers

Tags: , , News No comments
featured image

Opinion piece by Clear Europe Managing Director Gareth Harding on why most conferences are so boring and ten ways to make them less torturous.

I hate conferences. Always have. Always will. Maybe it’s because of my fidgety metabolism and intolerance of bullshit-peddling. Or maybe it’s because, champagne and canapés apart, conferences are usually a colossal waste of time and money.

Either way, I highly doubt one of my death-bed regrets will be “I wish I had spent more time away from my loved ones listening to long-winded PowerPoint presentations in stuffy conference rooms.”
Read More