The Five Gospels of News
Following, in order of importance, are the Five Gospels of News:
1. Topicality – The definition of topical is “a subject of immediate relevance, interest, or importance owing to its relation to current events.” If your story isn’t topical, it isn’t news.
2. Conflict – As storytellers, journalists crave conflict and drama; it sells newspapers and garners eyes and ears. You can create conflict in your releases by raising an issue or problem and describing how your company or client can solve that problem.
3. Locality – “Dallas Man Drowns. Titanic sinks.” People care about their friends and neighbors and what goes on in their local community. More and more space in newspapers and time on newscasts is being devoted to local news.
4. Human Interest – Don’t forget the human element in your releases. How does your company’s or client’s product or service impact the lives of people? Insert real people with real problems to whom readers, viewers and listeners can relate.
5. Visuality – Today, video is the king of content. Everyone wants video. TV stations want quality video to help support their ever-shrinking staffs, while newspaper and radio stations want video for their websites. Newspapers still need photographs and graphics because images attract a reader’s attention and supplement a story in ways words often can’t.
Here’s the sentence newsrooms love to hear: “I have incredible news happening right now to someone right here. And I have video and pictures.”
If you can religiously incorporate the Five Gospels of News into your releases, you will consistently capture media interest and generate placements for your company or client.
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