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Using Facebook

Discussion in 'Online Journalism' started by Smallpotatoes, Jan 5, 2020.

  1. Smallpotatoes

    Smallpotatoes Well-Known Member

    At my last job, the employers really stressed using Facebook to promote our work.

    The reasoning was that most people do not go directly to your web site to read what's on it. They find a story on Facebook and click on that.

    I guess that's true, but I didn't really buy into the idea that every single thing you do should be on Facebook. I couldn't understand why I saw the more routine stuff like youth photos and write ups and the routine, week-in, week-out high school stories promoted on Facebook.

    To me, it made sense to promote the big stuff, the features, the stories about the teams winning states or the league.

    I guess you never know what is going to catch the readers' attention, but if everything is a big deal, nothing is a big deal.

    One day I said that to one of the higher-up people on the digital side. Her reply was if it's not a big deal, why report it at all?

    While I didn't answer, there are some routine things that you publish because a part of your readership expects to see them. They're not anything that needs to be shouted from the highest mountaintop and the people who are looking for them will find them.

    Part of it is my own personality. I'm not one to shout everything from the highest mountain. I tend to be rather understated. Not everything is huge and acting as if it is diminishes what really is a big deal. Every football game isn't the Super Bowl. (Though I know one photographer who acts like every fire is the Towering Inferno).

    On the other hand, the three most important words I've ever learned about the business are "You never know." It might not seem like a big deal to me, but it might be to a lot of other people.

    Where does everyone here come down on this? Promote the shit out of everything or just the big stuff or only report the big stuff and maybe tell some readers "I'm sorry, but we don't do that anymore." about certain stories?
  2. Slacker

    Slacker Well-Known Member

  3. wicked

    wicked Well-Known Member

    I’ll bite.

    If it’s good, people will find it.

    This is what’s happened in multiple newsrooms where I’ve worked. Seeing a story spread organically via Twitter is a helluva lot more effective than any social “campaign.”

    Does this mean you don’t boost tweets and Facebook posts and don’t put effort into social language? Of course not. But you’re not gonna get 10,000 eyeballs on that story about the car crashing into Stanley’s barn, no matter what you do.
  4. justgladtobehere

    justgladtobehere Well-Known Member

    I think it is better that a reporter or newspaper promotes everything. The nature of a newspaper was that it had everything. People bought it because it would have the big news but there was other stuff that the reader might be interested in. Social media promotion should try to replicate that.

  5. nempreps

    nempreps New Member

    I don't think EVERYTHING should be posted on facebook.

    Your higher up asked you 'if it's not a big deal, why report it at all? Well... the truth is youth photos and other press releases are needed to be in the paper BUT no one really cares about them aside from the family that wanted it in. It is a necessary evil in papers, I'm afraid.

    So, if your facebook page posts EVERYTHING, including youth photos and JV recaps that some assistant coach sent in, people are just going to ignore it. However, if you only post major things people are going to take note and say 'Wow, these guys don't always post on here, so it must be a big deal'

    Just my two cents
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