30 Under 30: Mitchell Powell of NZME/The New Zealand Herald

By Dawn McMullan

INMA

Dallas, Texas, United States

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On September 30, INMA awarded 30 young professionals around the world with its second class of “30 Under 30” award as part of its Young Professionals Initiative. This is the 13th in a series of 30 features about these impressive rising media stars who are shaping our industry. 

Mitchell started in the ski industry, but an eight-week contract at NZME changed his entire career path.

Mitchell Powell is head of social/newsroom at NZME/The New Zealand Herald in New Zealand.
Mitchell Powell is head of social/newsroom at NZME/The New Zealand Herald in New Zealand.

“Charged with establishing a partner social media brand to the New Zealand Herald for coverage of non-mainstream sports, the eight-week contact turned into eight months, and the social media brand turned into a podcast that lasted close to 100 episodes.”

That was four years ago. Mitchell has been busy during New Zealand’s various COVID lockdowns. He built a business case for The Herald to invest in an AI-powered social media publishing provider. He redesigned the graphic elements of content across Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn. He launched a new strategy to deliver “new-look news” to feed the seemingly endless appetite of readers for news.

And he did all of this while working from home with the rest of the newsroom staff.

“Our driving objective was to support our readers through uncertain times. But we were so successful that our followership increased by well over 200,000. I am proud to say that social now contributes close to 30% of the traffic.”

About Dawn McMullan

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