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7 Ways To Build A Successful News Story :

7 Ways To Build A Successful News Story

It’s always news when the circus comes to town or a new teenage spelling champ is proclaimed, even though everyone has heard these stories before. Such events are newsworthy only because promoters have taken standardized stories and added a little spice, a new twist and some updating to make them current. Here are seven quick ways to embellish potential stories.

Does it conflict? Disagreements, court battles, disputes, discord, splits and divisions all make good stories.

Is it extreme? The mundane and the usual become newsworthy when the right adjectives are added. We’re interested in things and events that are larger, smaller, longer, wider, heavier, lighter, first, last, faster, slower, younger and older. The shortest guy in the NBA and the biggest convention in town both get coverage.

Is it dated? Is it happening now, later, tomorrow or never? Currency makes news and events related to a given date can also be newsworthy. A newly discovered set of Lincoln’s papers will make headlines. Bigger headlines are possible if the discovery is announced on the Great Emancipator’s birthday.

Is it a milestone? We relate to markers such as the town’s 100th anniversary, the one millionth album and the score of the last game. Give a story a milestone and you’ve created a news peg.

Is it localized? Floods in our home town are news, floods in a distant country are less interesting. The floods, and the potential for tragedy, are identical, but location influences our interest level.

Is it specialized? Does it affect a particular profession, religion, club or industry? We are each unique, but we are each part of many publics. The Methodist carpenter who collects stamps and vacations in Bermuda is part of at least four identifiable groupings. He’s a Methodist, a carpenter, a stamp collector and a Caribbean vacationer. An event that touches one of these four special interests may be newsworthy to him, but perhaps less so to the Catholic attorney who bowls weekly and vacations in Canada. The attorney has his own set of special interests.

Does it help? Devise a story that tells people “how to” and you’ll get coverage. Favorites include how to save money, make money, lose weight, find romance, stay healthy, be popular, keep fit and stay young.

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