Perspectives

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From category archives: Blog

Story Ideas all screens and platforms

Infographics: Quick-Turn Audience-Friendly Content

Infographics: Quick-Turn Audience-Friendly Content

Infographics are one of the more under-utilized forms of digital content for Local TV stations.

Here are four reasons why you should consider utilizing Infographics as part of your daily digital content offering:

1. Easy to Understand: Research shows our digital audience is often “on the go” or in need of quick digestible content. When you visualize data news consumers can more easily understand/engage with the content.
2. Repurposing Content: Infographics can be made quickly from information or data journalists have already gathered. Timelines help news consumers remember the history/impact of the story.
3. Break up the Sameness: Pictures and video are great for you digital content but Infographics can be eye-catching because it breaks up the sameness of the layout.
4. Shareable: When the audience connects with the content, Infographics can be very shareable. Comparisons and Lists can be favorites with news consumers. With Facebook’s recent changes, local news publishers need to find as many ways as possible to create “shareable content”.

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Top 10 TSRs

Top 10 TSRs

1. Do you really need that filling? Are Veneers really the answer? Empower your viewers with what to know and what to ask before they just accept what the dentist tells them.

2. It’s raining needles! Another facet to the opioid epidemic can take you to the landfills and dumps and the environmentalists. This will showcase the needles and the damage done. 

3. Is Marijuana legalization the pot of gold or the pot of mold? A look at what happens to home prices and the hidden mold from growin’ your own. If your state is thinking of legalizing here’s a different take on the pro/con debate.

4. As you tackle the pluses and minuses of ACA, here’s a look at how nonprofit hospitals are raking in the profits but not putting it back into the community. Examine how the communities around your hospitals are faring and are they worse off since ACA? 

 

 

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To Produce for Multiple Platforms, Start by Listening

To Produce for Multiple Platforms, Start by Listening

I had the honor of speaking on a panel at the NABJ Conference in New Orleans recently about producing for a multi-platform environment. Here is a quick hit of what I had to offer:

The most important step in producing in this era is actually not producing, but listening. You know the saying that to be a good writer you have to read a lot? Well, in order to be a good producer today, you have to consume a lot. Be smart about what you’re consuming and take note of why it’s resonating — or why it’s not. It’s also important to expose yourself to engaging content outside of the news echo chamber on today’s popular platforms; YouTube, Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat.

Have you heard of the term “Social listening”? Type that into Google and go to school. Newsrooms use it much differently than brands, as the goal is not so much to find out what people are saying about you – although that can be insightful – but what are people talking about in your community. What content should you produce that is going to resonate with your audience? You don’t have to guess any more. Now there are tools that can tell you.

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Hot Clips: October 2017

Hot Clips: October 2017

Our latest set of Hot Clips starts with the initial coverage of the horrific mass shooting in Las Vegas, and includes some updated Hurricane Irma Images and POP spots...

Vegas Shooting ND Phoner (KTNV, Las Vegas): the ABC-affiliate News Director, also a former reporter, calls-in to set up the scene while heading to the station

Wall of Victims (WWBT, Richmond): using the giant video wall to remember the Vegas shooting victims during a 6am show open

Irma Neighbors (WPTV, West Palm): using their ongoing This Is Home campaign to showcase how their South Florida community came together during Hurricane Irma

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Hurricane & Storm Storytelling Examples

There are many different facets of a hurricane for a local news station to cover in order to keep viewers informed and safe before, during, and after a hurricane. SmithGeiger has compiled a set of examples that showcase impactful hurricane coverage both on-air and through social media.

City specific…


Close up of the track…


Slice the storm…

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User-Generated Dominance

User-Generated Dominance

Years from now we may all be remembering where we were August 21, 2017 for the Great American Eclipse. For those who live smack dab in the path or within driving distance this may also be remembered as the biggest day in UGC history to date. Outside of the gaggle of local and national media covering this there will be millions of people who will simultaneously send up their drones, fire up their 360 capabilities, record a video, Facetime it or just simply shoot it from their mobile devices.

Capture that magic right now! Choreograph a multi-platform plan to get a dedicated UGC militia- Eclipse watchers working for you. To get you started:

Facebook Live - Schedule a number of these in the coming days which will not only answer people’s questions about everything from how to get there, to best places to stay, to of course the eye safety angle. Make your real motive for doing these to be about acquiring UGC. Be bold and overt and ask people who are going for UGC and to share how they will be recording the moment. Your aim is to get immediate access to their footage and their reaction. Remember: there are infinitely more of them than there are of you. In addition to liking all your commenters message, find those who can be your Eclipse watchers and sign ‘em up! Consider traveling with them to observe through their eyes.

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Solar Bits & Pieces

Solar Bits & Pieces

Prepare for Cell and Internet Outages
Some are predicting that cell service will be severely degraded during the eclipse due to overwhelming demand. In addition, Internet bandwidth will also be pegged as this eclipse is likely to result in the nation's largest social media event in history.

We recommend that stations install hard wired hot spots where they might want to go live from for extended periods that are password protected. And have your live trucks be prepared to be in place for a day (in case they can’t move or other issues) which means food and supplies including gas and sleeping bags.

App Helps Your Shoot the Eclipse
Below is a link to an app developed as a citizen science project created by UC Berkeley and Google that keeps your phone lenses from overheating while pointed at the sun, then automatically shoots timelapse images for the duration of the eclipse.
https://eclipsemega.movie/

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Quick Turn Story Ideas - May 2017

Quick Turn Story Ideas - May 2017

Our team has gathered a hot list of stories from around the country to stimulate your content calendar.

CUTTING EDGE- Do you really need to spend big bucks to have the best knives? The pro chef and the everyday chef approach from KARE TV can help sharpen your viewers’ opinions on what can best help them in the kitchen.

GREATEST GROCER- Making ends meet surfaces as a key content driver in many markets. Keep it simple and tee take a page out of Consumer Reports treatment to help your audience save a buck. We think there is great engagement possibility for Facebook Live before or after airing your story.

DANGER DRUG- Beyond the opioid epidemic the newest drug that’s hard to pronounce but will kill you by simply touching skin.

STOP OR NOT- Is yours one of the many states in this huge data dump from Stanford examining who police stop and who they don’t?

KIDS and CARS- It’s never been easier to keep tabs on kids behind the wheel. Some stations have installed these devices on vehicles in their fleet to keep tabs on speeding, hard breaking etc. Should you get Zubie or one of the many new alternatives? A safety and security story that takes you under the hood like never before.

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10 Story Ideas for May and the Summer

10 Story Ideas for May and the Summer

As you ramp up your story ideas for your May calendar, here is a selection of high impact stories to help.  Some of these can be a quick turn idea for May and others can be considered for your summer planning.

1 - More pets are making their way onto airline flights…are they legit?  Emotional support from ducks and pigs?  Are they crowding out human passengers?  WINK TV outlines how to investigate this growing trend

2 - It’s the season for outdoor birthday parties for kids across the whole country. Would you allow your kids to play in those popular bounce houses - the ones that can easily blow over or even fly out of the yard?  A safety and security alert for your viewers in this Today Show report.

3 - Botox is not just a facial fix for middle aged Americans - millennials are in love with the 15 year old lifestyle drug. 

4 - We’re on the brink of the worst year ever for Lyme disease. How do you guard against the dangerous ticks?  Keep your family safe this summer.

5 - Walmart or Amazon? The big box giant is under attack from the digital giant. Who wins this war for your wallet?

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Turning Your Smartphone Into a Super Snackable Machine

Turning Your Smartphone Into a Super Snackable Machine

The value of video, particularly short social mobile friendly videos that many call “snackables”, becomes clear as your team works across all platforms each day.

To help your team create these videos which are often consumed by smartphone users, you don’t have to look beyond the smartphone itself. As someone at the BBC described it, journalists need to go from their pocket where we keep our phones, to the pockets of today’s news consumers.

Today your smartphone is not just a high definition camera but also a video production tool and social media content creation platform. It also allows you to rethink how you cover stories, as lightweight gear that we always have with us, your team can be more nimble and less invasive in covering stories.

For these reasons leading news organizations are using smartphones to shoot, edit and share stories that connect them with their audiences around the world. From the BBC to ABC (from down under), journalists are beyond experimenting with mobile journalism, they are regularly producing stories using their smartphones that are intended for their audiences watching on smartphones.

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