Let’s Talk Features • Provide addi?onal background • Generate human interest • Create understanding in an imagina?ve way • Considered “soG” news, not as ?me sensi?ve • They provide more informa?on, a behind-‐the-‐ scenes perspec?ve, and generate publicity • Visuals usually accompany feature releases
Let’s Plan Features • You can pitch features diﬀerently. • Distribute a general feature to several media outlets • Write an exclusive feature • Pitch the idea and help a journalist write it • Post the feature on your Web site
Let’s Place a Feature • Newspapers, especially sec?ons that are not ?me-‐sensi?ve (e.g., lifestyle, food, automo?ve) • General magazines. • Specialty or trade magazines are great places for feature placements. • Internal publica?ons.
Types of Features • Case study – Third-‐party party endorsement – Think bloggers • Applica?on story – How to use a product or service in a new, innova?ve way • Research study – Surveys or polls that examine things such as lifestyles • Backgrounder – Where is there a problem, and how can your product or service solve it?
Types of Features • Personality proﬁle • Historical piece • Milestones allow reﬂec?on on an organiza?on’s history
Wri?ng a Feature • Headline – You don’t need a summery • Lead – Feature leads pique readers’ interest • Body – Features are longer than straight news releases – They’re meant to be read from beginning to end – They include quotes, illustra?ons, stats, descrip?on • Summary – Call back to the beginning.
Let’s write a feature lead and headline • The Glouster Livestock Show and Rodeo, a tradi?on for 75 years, will begin on October 5 and run through October 12.
Let’s write a feature lead and headline • The Florida Grapefruit Growers Associa?on has announced that this year’s crop is larger than last year’s, and greater availability will mean lower prices for the consumer.
Let’s Talk Media Advisories. • Media Advisories • Tell assignment editors about upcoming news events or opportuni?es or local angles • These are one page – Headline – Brief paragraph outlining the story with necessary 5 Ws and H – Contact informa?on
Let’s Talk Media Kits • Media Kits can include – Main news release – News feature – Fact sheet(s) – Photos or graphics with cap?ons – Biographical material on key players – Brochure(s)
Let’s Talk Media Kits • This is what the book doesn’t tell you about media kits, but I will. – People can spend thousands on fancy kits. • Free shirts. • Pizza boxes – You need to think about what the receiver needs. – You need to think about what you have. – You need to mesh those together.
In Class Assignment • The Minnesota Zoo is opening a major exhibit on bugs. As the director says, “ Thousands of live bugs will be creeping and crawling so visitors will not only be entertained but also learn about the impact they have on all of us.” • Included in the exhibit will be colorful North American buferﬂies and moths; a working colony of leaf-‐cufer ants, giant millipedes; cen?pedes; land crabs; arachnids, such as the world’s largest spider, tarantulas, and scorpions; and zebra cockroaches. • In addi?on, zoo goers will be able to walk through a buferﬂy garden where up to 600 free-‐ﬂying buferﬂies and moths will be feeding, res?ng, and emerging as adult buferﬂies. The grand opening of this exhibit will be on October 10, 2011.
In Class Assignment Write a media alert invi-ng the press to the opening and make some sugges-ons about who might be available for interviews, and what opportuni-es there will be for photo and video coverage. Email it to me.