How to Write Newsworthy Content
News is a form of information that presents current events, obtained from every moment and everywhere, to the public in an accurate and fast manner. It can be published in many forms, such as newspaper articles, magazine columns, television and radio shows, and social media posts. The news is usually presented objectively and impartially, avoiding personal opinions and bias.
A good news article starts with a clear, concise and engaging headline that is likely to be clicked on and read by the reader. It should also provide a brief summary of the story to give readers a preview before they start reading. The next paragraph, known as the ‘introduction’, is written to answer the key questions: who, what, where, when and why. This is the most important part of the article as it should include most of the necessary information. In a newspaper it is often printed above the fold, which refers to the crease that would be present on the page if it were folded in half; for online articles this means writing an introduction that is at the top of the screen before the reader has to scroll down to get more information.
After the intro comes the body of the article, which should be written to include more detail about the main event. This information should be arranged in order of importance, with the most important facts at the beginning of the piece. This allows people who don’t want to read the whole article to receive all the key information in a few short sentences and will encourage them to continue reading if they find it interesting. The conclusion of the article should include any final important information and may be a good place to use quotes from individuals who have been affected by the event. It is also a good idea to check the article over for errors, consistency and tone before publication.
Even the same event can have different levels of interest in different societies. For example, a farm wall collapsing and killing a cow and pig will be of more interest to the general public than an insect’s discovery living on a new plant that it did not previously inhabit.
It is the job of newspapers, magazines, radio and television to inform, not entertain. Entertainment is provided by other areas – drama and music on radio and TV; crosswords and cartoons in newspapers.
When creating a news article it is essential to know the audience you are targeting. This will dictate the tone and style of the article and help you to decide what to include or exclude. Asking yourself questions like: who is the average age of the audience, what kind of stories does this audience like to read, what do they want to hear about, and why is this particular story unique to you will help you write an effective news article.