What Is New Media?

By Jessi Farmer, MA
Faculty, College of Humanities and Social Sciences

students earning their new media degree

New media includes any type of digital content such as technology, images, audio and text. New media is found on the internet, whereas old media usually comes with intangible forms such as printed materials or through radio and television.

Aspiring journalists can benefit from pursuing a degree that offers a curriculum in new media. Most online news and social media sites include many types of new media. Articles may embed more new media such as videos or sound bites from interviews as elements of a story. New media degrees teach people how to create this type of content and determine which types of new media to use in which situation.

Examples of New Media

New media is extremely versatile and widely used. It changes frequently and continues to grow as more people adopt it, each bringing a unique perspective regarding the best ways to use new media. Most people interact with some form of new media every day. Some examples of new media are:

  • Video/music streaming services: Video streaming services like YouTube and TikTok offer streaming capabilities for high-quality video for millions of viewers.

  • Email: Email newsletters are regular subscriptions that allow organizations and individuals to interact with readers and viewers with email campaign services.

  • Blogs/Social Media: Informal content posted on an organization’s blog or social media empowers organizations to make promotions apart from newspapers, radio and other traditionally-expensive advertisements.
  • Podcasts: Creating a podcast offers an inexpensive way to communicate directly with the public through recorded statements offering news, updates on organizations and recognizing sponsors of an organization.

Skills in New Media

When you work in new media, you develop robust design skills in addition to writing and editing skills. These new media-related skills are extremely marketable and empower professionals to work in countless industries interested in including new media in their outreach. By its nature, all media focuses on communicating a message or idea to a wider audience. New media requires you to build communication skills in persuasive writing, digital marketing, public relations and video production.

One of the most important skills in new media is using modern tools to deliver effective messages. Global companies are looking for people who take what they learned while acquiring their new media degrees and apply it to spreading the word about a brand or company.

New media helps organizations reach new types of customers and clients. Audiences today are turning to new media to get to know about a company and to gather information. Many people are willing to watch short videos or listen to quick sound bites as an alternative to reading long articles or white papers.

Put Your New Media Degree to Work

Throughout your degree program, you will gravitate toward your preferred new media channels as you complete assignments meant to make you more familiar with them.

New media is always changing. If you keep up with changes in new media, you might be the first person to establish yourself as an expert in certain communication platforms. Here are a few of the positions that you can pursue if you want to work with new media.

Social Media Director

Experts in social media can represent a company or brand on platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. They determine the best content to share with an audience across the platform. They create content, post it and maintain communication with customers. A graduate interested in leveraging new media to support customers across different platforms would make a great social media director.

Public Relations Specialist

People who gravitate to public relations work well with others. PR specialists help maintain and improve a company's reputation and public image. They do this by working with members of the media, writing press releases and organizing events. PR people are also usually involved in internal communications and may help company leaders write speeches and thought leadership pieces.

Graphic Designer

If you have earned a new media degree and are especially interested in graphics, then graphic design may be the right career path for you. Graphic designers create visual images and may also work with video. They use graphics to tell stories for brands and products. Graphic designers often work with writers to get the right interplay of visuals and text. They may create the look and feel of a website. They may also work on print materials that support new media campaigns.

Digital Editor

Websites are the new magazines. And no magazine would go to print without a strong editor. Digital editors who have earned a new media degree are tasked with ensuring that content is consistent across a site. They work with both the words and the visuals that are shared digitally. Editors supervise writers and other people who develop content for a website.

Grand Canyon University offers a range of new media degrees. You can earn a Bachelor of Arts in Film and Production. If you are interested in using new media to pursue a passion for communications or journalism, you can explore our Bachelor of Arts in Professional Writing and Master of Arts in Communications degree programs. To learn more about the College of Humanities and Social Sciences, click the Request Information button on this page.

The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author’s and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Grand Canyon University. Any sources cited were accurate as of the publish date.

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