, Manager of Digital Content at Linden Lab, Associate Professor/Director of the Integrated Communication at Everett (ICE) program at The Edward R. Murrow College of Communication (Washington State University)
• Flesh out the details of your pitch
• A general topic is not enough
– “College drinking” is too broad a topic
– Narrow it down
– Use a specific incident as a springboard for the topic and then dig
deeper to find the angle
– Why is there a problem? Has the problem increased compared to last
year? What is being done about it? Etc. etc. etc…
• Research before you pitch your story idea
• Is this really a new idea or a new angle?
• What makes it news?
• Why will a journalist or the public care?
• Why does it matter to your readers?
• Keep the pitch clean and focused
• “Edit your thoughts” before the pitch
• The main point should be easily understood
• To some degree, you are “selling” the idea
and you may only get one shot!
Think Like An Editor
• Put yourselves in the position of the editor or
reporter you are pitching
• What are they looking for?
• What will they respond positively to?
• What does the readership and publisher
• Be prepared to be challenged
• Have a few “alternative angles” prepared so
that you can save your pitch
What makes a good story?
• Substantial news value
• Being first
• Unique angle
• Local angle of national story
• Overcoming adversity
• Solving a common problem
• Ties into a national trend