Jason DeRusha: Lessons in New Media

Media Training, Seminars, Advice

Posts Tagged ‘Media’

How To Reward Newsroom “2.0” Staffers

Posted by derushaj on April 11, 2008

We all know no one has any money.  And the people who would do this best will do it without money.  So how do you reward them?   

  • Don’t mock their efforts: It’s easy to take pot shots or make little sarcastic remarks, a la, “You gonna put that in your blog?”  That’s not helpful, and it makes it harder to foster an environment where experimentation and innovation thrive.
  • PRAISE Them: Read the blogs or videoblogs and send notes praising things that are good.  In a newsroom, staffers rarely get notes of praise.  It’s the only currency anyone is able to use these days.
  • Consider On-Air Promotion: This is a huge way of rewarding the people who do this for you.  How many stations have a promo singling out bloggers?  I can’t think of any.  But how meaningful would that be to the assignment editor running your baseball blog, or your health reporter with the medical blog?
  • Give Them Leadership Opportunities: Consider inviting local bloggers into your building for a forum on media.  Instead of having your anchor lead it, have your blogger/videoblogger lead the effort.
  • Don’t be afraid to offer constructive critisicm: Some things are not going to work.  Some people will go too far in experimenting.  Don’t call the person on the carpet.  Instead, invite them to discuss it, share thoughts, and try to improve things for the future. 
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How To Find Newsroom “2.0” Staffers

Posted by derushaj on April 11, 2008

Ask them: You probably can identify the staffers you have who would write an interesting blog, or prepare an interesting videoblog.  So invite them to do it.

  • Anchors Don’t Necessarily Make Good Bloggers: Just because the person is the TV face of your station, doesn’t mean they should be the online face of your station.
  • Look For People With A Voice: You need someone with a sense of humor, or a skill at biting analysis.
  • Specialists Are Ideal: Political reporters, sports reporters, weather people, or staffers with developed hobbies (the skiier, the singer, the gardner).  Look for a niche and fill it.
  • Less Is More: Resist the temptation to mandate that everyone carve out a web presence.  One great blog/videoblog is better than 7 crappy ones.
  • Take Advantage of Ego:  I started blogging here because I saw a morning weather guy with an “I’m gonna be a daddy” blog, and thought I could do a better job.  I asked if I could have a blog, and there it was.  I started a videoblog when I thought of things to do in the field covering stories that would be funny or interesting.  I asked, and I was given the leash.  If you have a staff member who’s asking to do more, generally, it’s a good idea to let them do more.

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Rapid Response Competitive Public Relations

Posted by derushaj on December 11, 2007

Not long ago I did a story on a woman who believes her DirecTV installer (a contractor with another company) stole her laptop computer.  It was there prior to install, then gone after.

Immediately after my story, I got this e-mail from Christopher Huseth, Comcast

Jason, I just read your story about the sub-contractor for DIRECTV stealing Ms Adams lap top in Robinsdale.  How terrible!  Sad to say I’m not surprised to hear this   I would like to extend Ms. Adams to Comcast Cable, Internet, and Phone services.   We are local, bonded, and insured.   Rest assured I would personally follow up on her installation myself, if she was interested in switching television providers?    Please pass along to Ms. Adams as you may?  My contact information is below.

I forwarded the e-mail and today got a note from Mr. Huseth saying that Jamie Adams may switch when she moves.  Good, personal, public relations.

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