Chapter 4 Notes- Finding and Making News

February 17, 2010 at 10:15 am Leave a comment

Public Relations Writing and Media Techniques

by: Denis L. Wilcox

The Challenge of Making News

publicity- resulting coverage from providing information to the media in hopes that it will be published or broadcast

publicist- PR writer who writes and places stories in the media

Publicists need to know 3 things

  1. Thoroughly familiar with traditional journalistic values
  2. Know where to find news and how to select the angle that will be most interesting to journalists and the public
  3. They must be problem solvers and come up with creative publicity tactics that effectively break through a forest of competing messages

Publicist must navigate at least 4 obstacles

  1. Media gatekeepers
  2. Incredibly shrinking news hole
  3. Traditional mass media is now fragmented- need to be adept at preparing and packaging publicity materials in a variety of formats
  4. Information overload

Take several steps to overcome the obstacles

  • Understand news values
  • Target the right media with your information
  • Thing continuously about the interests of the reader/listeners
  • Keeping in mind the objectives of the client or employer

What Makes News

  • Timeliness- news must be current
  • Prominence – presence of movie stars, rock stars, athletes, can attract media coverage; also can use governor or even a mayor.
  • Proximity- surveys have shown that the news release most acceptable to media gatekeepers are those with a local angle.
  • Significance- any situation or event that can affect a substantial number of people is significant.
  • Unusualness – anything out of the ordinary attracts press interest and public attention
  • Human Interest – people like to read about other people
  • Conflict- two or more groups advocate different views on a topic of current interest this creates news
  • Newness- any news release announcing a new product of service has a good chance of being published.

How to Find News

  • Internal News Sources – periodicals, clipping files, important papers (annual reports, market share, sales projections, etc.)
  • External News Sources – you need to read, listen to, and watch the news for events and situations that may affect your organization.

How to Create News

Brainstorming, Special Events, Contests, Polls and Surveys, Top 10 Lists, Product Demonstrations, Stunts, Rallies and Protests, Personal Appearances, Awards

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Entry filed under: Pr Writing 3330- Section A, Reading Notes- PRCA 3330. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , .

What Makes a Story Newsworthy? How To Write a Press Release

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