a. Who are we? What do we do?
- We are Online Marketplaces Group and in external communications, we should be referred to as such. “OnlineMarketplaces”, “Online-Marketplaces” and “onlinemarketplaces” are all incorrect. If using abbreviations, we are “OMP”. Our news website should be referred to in written communication as “OnlineMarketplaces.com” in much the same way as OnTheMarket.com always insist on.
- The Online Marketplaces Group is the global leader in content, conferences and thought leadership in the Real Estate sector. It is the company behind the famous Property Portal Watch and Global Online Marketplaces Summit series of conferences. Our editorial content hosted on OnlineMarketplaces.com is produced with the aim of providing free, timely, accurate industry news as well as insight, analysis and opinion to anyone who wants it.
- We have offices in both Madrid, Spain and Melbourne, Australia.
- Launched by industry expert Simon Baker in 2008, Property Portal Watch (PPW) and more recently Online Marketplaces (OMP) has grown to encompass rich news and analysis, regular international conferences as well as consulting and advisory work. Between us we have an unparalleled network of connections in the industry and have built a true community around our conferences and editorial content over the years.
Writing Goals and Principles
a. What we aim to do
- The principle aim of articles on the onlinemarketplaces.com site is to inform. Even if the tone of the content changes with the format, we strive to always impart information first and foremost.
- Beyond the simple imparting of information, Online Marketplaces aims to become a guide for its readership. The information we give ultimately has the goal of informing decisions made by our readership. We are leveraging the authority and experience we have garnered since 2008 to become the voice of the industry.
b. How we do it
- It is essential that the reader trusts us to give fair, accurate and unbiased information. We do not publish something until it is verified. As we are global, we have no need to be first to press with hot scoops.
- We summarise and contextualise. Our point of difference is not that we break country-specific news or that we go into detail on finer points of these pieces of news. Our point of difference is that we contextualise these pieces of news within the broader scope of the global online property marketing industry. We must be forthright in telling the reader why the local is relevant to the global. We deal with trends.
Voice and Tone
- By nature, the subject of the content that we write about is highly relevant to relatively few internet users. However, our voice is not esoteric. We do not assume that all readers are as intimately familiar with property portals around the world as we are. For example, which conglomerate owns which portal is, where possible, articulated with a link to an article on onlinemarketplaces.com detailing the relationship.
- Our tone is businesslike rather than formal, TechCrunch rather than Forbes. We are part of the establishment but we are not prescriptive. Our tone is tabloid rather than broadsheet, we are not dispassionate in tone like Reuters or the BBC but warm and close to the readers (many of whom we may know personally).
- We use contractions. As we can reasonably assume that we know some of our readers personally it makes sense to use “we’re” instead of “we are” and “you’re” instead of “you are” in our communication with them.
Layout & Length
a. Hierarchy of Information
- Articles on OnlineMarketplaces use the inverted pyramid principle of journalism: The most newsworthy points (what? who? why? how?) followed by relevant details and then the broader context in that order. This final part, the wider context, is our point of difference and readers are always be encouraged to read the whole article. For that reason, the word count for purely news-based articles is kept short. Quotes, if used, are kept short.
- We always try to contextualize news stories in the wider picture of what is happening in online marketplaces globally. The final paragraph of our articles usually attempts to do this and if possible link to some other page example within the onlinemarketplaces.com domain.
a. Language Neutrality
- We have a global readership and we respect this. Readers understand that a publication might vary between either US or UK English when it comes to spelling, but not when it comes to lexical idiosyncrasies. Words like “often times” and phrases like “a couple times (missing the ‘of’)” are avoided.
- Regarding regional words and abbreviations such as “BHK” in India, these are explained, either in parenthesis or italics as (bedroom hall kitchen).
b. Sentence Structure
- The active voice should be preferred to the passive where possible.
- Things should be happening rather than not happening. “The government has decided not to introduce the planned tax increase on petrol and diesel this autumn.” should be instead: “The government has abandoned plans to raise fuel taxes this autumn.” News is more engaging if it describes something that is happening, rather than something that is not.
a. Classification and Tagging
- All editorial content is categorized according to its primary geographical region. Separately, tags are used to group content by country and by the companys which each story is about.
- Similar content is displayed based on company level tags.
These guidelines were last updated on the 10th of March, 2021.