BuzzFeed’s strategy for getting content to do well on all platforms? Adaptation and a lot of A/B testing
September 15 2017
How does Buzzfeed get so much of its content to go viral? It employs a complex strategy that involves “tailoring subject matters to the platforms with the most receptive audiences, plus constant A/B testing.”
Are nonprofit news sites just creating more content for elites who already read a lot of news?
September 6 2017
This Nieman Lab interview with Rodney Benson, author of Can Foundations Solve the Journalism Crisis, explores Benson’s perspective on foundation-funded nonprofit news sites. “It’s a Catch-22,” he says. “The foundations are asking nonprofit media to be [financially] sustainable and to have impact. Those two things don’t go together easily.”
Improving accountability reporting: How to make the best of journalism better for audiences
August 8 2017
This strategy study from the American Press Institute explores a new approach to accountability journalism to make complex information more accessible by “emphasizing the non-narrative, data or visual elements made possible by digital news.” It includes a portfolio of successful examples of journalism projects that effectively convey complex topics in digestible formats.
This Ikea-inspired toolkit for newsroom processes developed by Financial Times staffers provides a “set of resources and material to help reporters and editors better plan, execute, and evaluate editorial projects.”
Out of struggle: Strengthening and expanding movement journalism in the US
August 1 2017
This report from the nonprofit Project South Movement Communications Fellowship maps the independent media landscape in the 13 states that comprise the American South, with a focus on community and minority-owned media. The report is the first phase of developing and launching a “movement-driven” media organization in the service of “social, political, and economic transformation.”
This four-part series of ebooks from social impact accounting platform SoPact and the University of Melbourne’s Asia Pacific Social Impact Centre provides an internal framework for organizations seeking to measure impact in a data and outcome-oriented process as well as ways to effectively communicate impact to stakeholders.”
How battling brands online has gained urgency, and impact
June 21 2017
Social change media makers may find fighting corporate brands online to be an effective piece of their impact strategies: “Posting a hashtag — #deleteUber, for instance, or #grabyourwallet — and threatening to back it up by withholding dollars can bring about a much quicker, more visible change in the world than, say, calling your representative.”
A superhero power for our time: How to handle the truth
June 20 2017
How can social change makers increase the likelihood that their messages will be received? This article describes how when people feel a claim is familiar and fits existing narratives, they will evaluate claims based on intuitive processes (“gut feelings”) rather than analytical ones. Therefore, “simply telling people they are wrong is unlikely to change many minds, but making the flow of false claims a bit more bumpy can push people into analytic evaluations rather than intuitive ones.”
Researchers investigated whether happy or sad images were more likely to inspire charitable donations and found that “participants with high levels of charitable involvement were more likely to express an intent to donate in response to happy pictures. People who were less involved with charities were more likely to say they were interested in donating after seeing sad images.”
The Swedish startup Kit is rethinking analytics for a broader view of what makes a story successful
June 8 2017
In this book, media strategist Tracey Friesen combines case studies and interviews with successful producers, funding information, key story ingredients, outcome goals, and worksheets to help guide makers, funders and activists looking to use media to create lasting change.