3. Our identity (a work in progress)

OK, i’m not a writer (obvs), but here are the brand bits from the redesign slotted into the Start With Why template: WHY, HOW, WHAT.

We love conversation.

The best conversations are those where we learn something or are made to feel something.

Metro brings these conversations to life by being in the know, provocative and entertaining. Be warned, our irreverent and sassy style has a distinctly British sense of humour.

Metro brings you stories so compelling that you’ll want to share them.

I know, it’s half-baked. Below are some explanations of what it’s trying to say.

“Learn something” means something new. People like new stuff, or a new take on something not-so-new. It’s often said that news should inform, but this makes me think of being told something dull which i already know.

New means new to the reader, even if it isn’t new to everyone.

“Provocative”, as in provoking a reaction. It’s really just re-phrasing that we want to make readers feel something.

“Entertaining” is core to Metro’s identity but it’s really just a special case of making readers feel something.

“Sassy” as in cool, which hopefully will make our readers look good in front of the friends.

Can we validate this?

If Metro was a person, would people go on a date with him/her? Here my quick attempt to find out by mining an online dating site.

The Mirror example

Here is how The Mirror describe themselves. (Long version | Cat gif version).

We don’t just print words, we believe in them. We support a cause or a policy through conviction – not just self-interest. We are passionate about setting the news agenda.

“We want to inform and analyse – not just titillate. Because there’s one other thing that really makes the Mirror stand out from the tabloid crowd … We have a brain – and so do our readers. We are the intelligent tabloid.

This is also a close fit with WHY, HOW, WHAT.

Their WHY is to champion worthy causes, their HOW is by informing and analysing, their WHAT is being an intelligent tabloid.

Alternative

Let’s try fitting “news but not as you know it” into the template.

We believe in doing things differently.

Metro does things differently by being provocative, entertaining and irreverent. Be warned, we have a distinctly British sense of humour.

Metro is news… but not as you know it.

How can we validate which identity really gets to the core of Metro? Cue next post.

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