Volume 4, No. 12
June 1, 2009
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Tips for Pitching a TV Newsroom
I attended a Public Relations Society of America monthly breakfast forum in San Francisco last week, featuring local TV newsmen Tom Vacar of KTVU Channel 2 and Joe Vazquez of KPIX CBS 5. The topic was how to navigate a newsroom. A theme in their comments was how the Internet has changed how they work. Deadlines have changed. The story of the day changes more frequently.
"People are seeing news throughout the day on their computers," Vazquez said, "so when they watch TV in the evening, they want to see something different."
They also said that their stations don't do many features anymore. "Features are pretty much out the window," Vacar said of KTVU. Producers are only interested in hard news. Vazques said he likes to do features, but doesn't get to do many.
Additional Advice from the TV Newsmen
- Story pitches should tie-in to what is happening now.
- Follow Yahoo and Google News to keep up with breaking news.
- Reporters want a good story. Pitch the story and its characters.
- Pitch stories for the 11 p.m. newscast between 2 p.m. and 3 p.m.
- Return a reporter's phone call immediately. Who gets on the news is who is first to return the call.
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