DAILY ONLINE MEDIA COVERAGE – KEEPING YOUR OFFICIALS AWARE AND INFORMEDMichael Carson
Why Would There Be A Need? • No one likes being caught by surprise – good news or bad. • Timesaving – one person checks online news sources and organizes entries. • Relevant information can be shared with many in organization.
Daily Online Media Coverage • Tucson’s Public Information Office is responsible for locating City government related news on available local and regional websites. • A daily email is sent to prescribed groups, and contains a headline/summary and a link for each entry. • Groups include Mayor and Council Offices; City Manager’s Office; City Directors and Executive Assistants; and interested employees in various City positions and offices. • The City of Tucson also posts the contents as a document, with active links, on its employee Intranet.
Content Of Online Media Coverage • Urgent news, current issues, opinion pieces • General news about organization, partnerships, projects • Related news about community, local businesses, influential people, etc. • Online updates as necessary
Website Sources • Daily newspapers, including University of Arizona • Weekly, monthly, specialty newspapers and publications • Television • Radio • Relevant trade and government publications (examples of news sites on next five slides)
Each entry consists of: • Headline/Summary • Date • Link(s) Example: City’s enforcement of overgrown weeds on private and on City properties (10/22/06) http://www.azstarnet.com/altds/pastframe/metro/152250
The City of Tucson Public Information Office uses three categories for Online Media Coverage: • City News and Issues • City Projects/Programs/Events • Related Items of Interest
City News And Issues New cases of West Nile virus; County, City efforts to abate problem (10/13/06) http://www.azstarnet.com/metro/150910 Neighbors, businesses ask about Grant Road widening (10/12/06) http://www.kold.com/Global/story.asp?S=5529215 City taking comments on its drought management plan (10/11/06) http://www.tucsoncitizen.com/daily/local/28996.php
City Projects/ Programs/Events Tucson Police Warn Cyclists, Motorists To Look Out For Each Other (10/23/06) http://www.kold.com/Global/story.asp?S=5579714 Cleaner biodiesel fuel powering City's vehicles (10/14/06) http://www.tucsoncitizen.com/daily/local/29367.php Tucson Fire issues warning on carbon monoxide (10/10/06) http://www.tucsoncitizen.com/ss/family/28872.php http://www.fox11az.com/news/topstories/stories/kmsb_20061009_fire_dr.22248ac2.html (video)
Related Items Of Interest Fundraiser on Friday will mark Open Inn's 32nd anniversary (10/16/06) http://www.tucsoncitizen.com/daily/local/29482.php Pima County government will host open house on wastewater treatment plant (10/13/06) http://www.tucsoncitizen.com/daily/local/29300.php Local businesses forging partnerships to stop Tucson teen homelessness (10/11/06) http://www.kgun9.com/NewsArticle/tabid/1112/xmid/5517/Default.aspx (video)
Tips • Be clear on subject matter for your audience(s). • Use media’s headline or your own. • Edit to avoid emotional or disparaging wording. • Group similar stories from different websites.
More Tips • Skip items that are unrelated to your organization’s business-at-hand. • Include opinion pieces, but not personal attacks. • Watch for duplicate and outdated references on websites.
What You Do • Bookmark all available and relevant news-related websites. • Know your links – what’s original and what’s duplicate; who updates and when, etc. • Expand your online sources to customize your service. • Think of what interests your audience, which may be varied.
News Website Registrations • If registration is needed for news access, it’s usually free. • Offer to paste/send complete article to someone if requested. • Edit paste job before sending – copying usually picks up unwanted stuff (ads, breaks, other links, etc.).
Video Players • There are several video players and versions are always changing. • Your recipients may have to request upgrades to access some videos.
Spinoffs You may find news a smaller audience will appreciate – even one person. Send a separate email with article and link. Example (this was sent to Tucson Fire PIOs): Paramedics' new monitors helping treat heart attacks (Arizona Republic, 10/9/06) http://www.azcentral.com/arizonarepublic/local/articles/1009phxmonitor1009.html
Should You Use An Online Search Or Clipping Service? • You might consider a service if your organization receives regular national or trade exposure. Otherwise, learn your local, regional, and specialty media websites (remember Spanish, when available) and how to navigate within each. • Look beyond a headline or sound bite to see if your organization or its officials are noted or quoted further in. Once you get the hang of things, you’ll find that “surfing the news” for relevant stuff is as easy as finding your favorite tunes on a jukebox.
What Else? • Have fun sharing the news.
Please contact me if you have any questions. Michael Carson City of Tucson 520-791-5661 firstname.lastname@example.org
Bonus Slide You won’t be able to cover everything – every road maintenance project, house fire, police action, appearance or comment by someone, etc. In many of those cases, it is not necessary news for your audience. You’ll learn to know what makes your service valuable. However, if someone requests coverage of something, then include it the next day and thereafter, as appropriate.