Mark Shapland shares his insight on the business stories the Daily Mail wants to hear and how you can better prepare when pitching your stories.
Watch our interview with Mark Shapland, Associate City Editor, Daily Mail and learn the key tips and tricks to get your stories featured online and in print.
Associate City Editor
With more than a decade working on the UK’s nationals, Mark started his career as a Reporter at The Sun in 2012 before joining the Mail Online in 2015 as City Correspondent. In 2018 he moved to the Evening Standard before returning to Associated Newspapers as Daily Mail Associate City Editor in November, 2020.
Pitching tips from Mark Shapland, Associate City Editor, Daily Mail.
Three top tips:
- The best time to contact Mark with a story is from 8am – 10am.
- Including strong photography with an initial pitch can make the difference between a story being run or not.
- Mark regularly phones PRs after they send over press releases. Be ready to take his call.
- The business pages audience is the same as the paper: middle class and likely to have some money, savings or investments.
- SME business owners are also a core part of the readership.
- Mark is increasingly writing for the MailOnline where readers are slightly younger.
Who to contact:
- Group Business Editor, Ruth Sunderland leads the business team.
- Business Editor, Hugo Duncan is her second in command.
- As Associate City Editor, Mark covers M&As, liability-driven investments (LDIs), private equity, levelling up, the energy sector and commodities. He also picks up the editing role when Ruth and Hugo are both off.
How to contact:
- Mark would rather hear about a story first-hand than read it in a competitor’s newspaper and is very open to being approached.
- Email is always the best way of making the initial approach – with pictures, ancillary data and case studies all included. Follow-up emails are accepted.
- Call the business desk if you feel your release has gone unnoticed and it is a genuinely strong story.
When to contact:
- The business team are all at their desks by 9am and the first informal meeting is held between Ruth, Hugo, Alex and Mark at 10am.
- The first full newspaper editorial meeting is held at 11am, it is during this meeting the team decide which business stories to promote to the front.
- The team make final decisions for the newspaper’s content at a second full editorial meeting held at 4pm.
What to pitch:
- Mark says the desk is the busiest he has seen since the financial crash in 2008 and there is a real hunger for business stories, especially in the general news section.
- Readers’ core interests are company results, the performance of stocks and shares, currency fluctuations, the travails of the pound and the retail landscape.
- He is hopeful of some positive stories which could include a shorter recession than predicted, the solving of Brexit issues, levelling up projects and any developments in the renewable energy market.