The Lion is Ready to Roar….

2016 has been a strange year with the “Brexit” vote in the UK and the election of Donald Trump as the next President of the United States dominating the media. I will refrain from offering a personal view of these occurrences, although both will have far-reaching impact on the technology sector.

As a “media professional,” I have been fascinated by the rise of “fake news” websites and the enormous influence that they are having on shaping the views of people around the world. No matter what side of the fence you are on, if you spend any time at all on social media, you will have been subject to someone posting content from a fake news site to either back up their point or attack those with the opposing view.

We are now finding out that many of these sites were created by tech-savvy search-engine experts with no strong political views of their own, but a strong desire to drive page views and make money from advertising. Meanwhile the “mainstream” media finds itself caught in a maelstrom of mistrust.

In the electronics media space here in the U.S., we are all trying to make sense of the acquisition of media brands by Arrow Electronics, a large electronics distributor that does business with hundreds of semiconductor companies. Despite assurances from the folks at Arrow that there is a “wall” between their distribution business and their newly acquired media business, there is a prevalent atmosphere of fear, uncertainty, and doubt in almost every conversation I have with the marketing community.

Here at Penton, we have spent the last 12 months researching our audience, assessing our positioning, and building a strategy to grow our influence and become more comprehensive and essential for engineers and marketers alike. Our repositioning starts with a commitment to being “fiercely independent” — ensuring that our content teams are free to report on the best technologies, solutions, and tools for our electronics and mechanical engineers. Our portfolio of media brands and solutions combines to make us one of the largest independent media companies covering the engineering sector. We intend to build upon that position in 2017.

As I mentioned in a previous blog, we are releasing (this month!) groundbreaking research in the semiconductor sector—and stay tuned for similar essential data for the distribution space and other vertical markets. In addition, we will be launching new investigative reports into the disruptions in the electronics and mechanical engineering markets to help engineers navigate the changing waters to ensure the most successful design decisions.

In addition to re-launching every website in our portfolio in the coming spring, we will be making some exciting announcements in the New Year. In the meantime, I would like to wish everyone a safe and happy holiday season. I look forward to discussing our fierce independence with you in the near future!

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