Fox’s WTVT won first place in the Large Market category in TVNewsCheck’s inaugural Social Media Excellence Awards. Its news director reveals how the station uses the natural beauty of the area to heighten engagement with its users.
WDAF Kansas City wanted to thank its 500,000 Facebook fans with a special day of celebration. Problem was, as the day approached, it didn’t have a half million followers. The solution was a 24-hour Facebook Live marathon. “I don’t know that it’s been done before, but to go 24 hours straight on Facebook Live was quite the feat,” said Danielle Ray, WDAF’s creative services director.
With its building flooded out, Sinclair’s WCTI in New Bern, N.C., had to get creative to bring its viewers news coverage of Hurricane Florence. Facebook carried the load for a few days, and then when it got back on the air, producing newscasts from locations all over town kept viewers in the know. “We have a lot of young people here and I’m impressed by how well they’re taking it and how well they’re doing. They know they have a task,” said Sean Finn, WCTI’s creative services director.
This week’s Social Scorecard covers the social media scene in New York City where broadcasters are vying for their share of engagement among 140 million actions. WNYW, the Fox O&O, is far ahead of all broadcasters there. Its secret? Fewer posts that appeal to their followers’ emotions. “Sometimes, less is more,” says Dan Carlin, the station’s programming and research VP.
With a rare Category 5 hurricane bearing down on the Hawaiian Islands, KHON Honolulu got coverage help from owner Nexstar’s Washington bureau and stations in California, Nevada and Pennsylvania. The effort led to an outpouring of support from the community. “I’ve never in my life seen anything like it,” said Kristina Lockwood, KHON’s general manager.
Social Scorecard this week comes from Cedar Rapids, Iowa, about 100 miles east of Des Moines, where Gray’s KCRG is on top of social media. The key to its success on Facebook is reliable information, just like on television. “We are your trusted source regardless of the platform,” says Adam Carros, KCRG’s news director. “I think that’s really the value at the end of the day.”
This week, Social Scorecard is in West Michigan’s largest city, Grand Rapids, just 30 miles east of Lake Michigan, to find out what WXMI is serving on Facebook to make it the most engaged. The secret ingredients are an appetite for food and short, easily digested videos.
KARK’s new morning news anchor took an RV tour of 36 counties covering 1,600 miles. I’ve seen many promos, and marketing and advertising campaigns that introduce a news personality to a newscast, many of them clever and memorable, but I’ve never seen one quite like this. It flat out works.
KGBT down in the Rio Grande Valley of Texas is not only leading on Facebook in market 84, but is outperforming stations in markets that are much larger. “We have 332,881 likes on our Facebook page, more likes than some of the stations that are in the top 20, top 30 markets. I’m excited about that,” says Ronald Marley, KGBT’s digital executive producer.
Two TV stations in Chico-Redding, Calif., KRCR and KHSL, devoted a combined 230 hours of continuous live coverage on television starting last Thursday. In addition, both posted hundreds of stories to their Facebook pages. Viewers noticed their coverage on TV and on Facebook, and flooded the stations with emails and Facebook comments.