I Heard It From The PR Girl


Chapter 4: Finding and Making News

Posted in Reading Notes by laurynwilliams on February 16, 2010

Timeliness may be the most important characteristic of news.  News must be current.  A story angle can be made timely in 5 ways:

  • Announce something when it happens
  • Provide information or story ideas that relate to an event or situation that is already being extensively covered by the new media
  • Relate the organization’s products or services to another event that has national recognition and interest
  • Offer information linked to events and holidays that are already on the public agenda
  • Gear activities around a self-designated day, week, or even month

There are several steps to take to make your efforts in making the news more effective:

  1. understanding news values
  2. targeting the right media with your information
  3. thinking continuously about the interests or the readers or listeners
  4. keeping in mind the objectives of the client or employer
  5. exercising creativity in thinking about how to present information that will meet the requirements or media gate keepers

Newness

Advertising and marketing people say that the 2 words they find the most useful are “new” and “free.” The word “free” will be used less.  Be careful not to publish something as new if only the packaging has changed or if it slightly up dated. Most updated models get less media coverage than a new item.

Internal News Sources

Do research on your organization. Look at important papers, for example policy statements and annual reports. Also, review periodicals, clipping files, and other published materials, such as copies of the organization’s brochures, speeches, slide presentations, and sales material.

All material here is quoted or paraphrased from Public Relations Writing and Media Techniques (6th Ed.)

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