Production Blogs

The development of appealing news stories

It’s all about the angles!

[One-sentence description of what this media is: "A photo of a vaccine site on USC campus" or "Gif of dancing banana". Important for accessibility/people who use screen readers.]

Every week, Thursday’s See it Live show is centered on one main topic. My producers and I meet a day prior to the show to brainstorm and decide on a topic as a team. Once achieved, we further dive into it by sharing various angles to cover. Although doable, choosing specific stories that further enhance our topic can be challenging at times.

Thursday’s topic was centered on the rivalry between USC and UCLA leading up to the much-anticipated game on Saturday. With so many story ideas shared among us, it was important to remind myself of our audience. What captures their attention? How can we engage more viewership? And, what makes our stories appealing? These are all questions that must be considered when developing story ideas. After a few hours, I constructed two story pitches I felt passionate about.

One remarkable thing about our Thursday team is how comfortable we are in sharing our ideas. We meet Wednesday night to discuss our pitches and discuss the angles to our stories. What do I mean by a specific angle? Well, it answers the question – what about the story is relatable to our audience? Sure, we can share any story idea, but what angle are we approaching this story to entice viewership? The angle helps determine how and why these stories are appealing.

In addition, social media engagement also plays a huge part in our show. To attract a younger audience, we posted a Q&A on Annenberg Media’s Instagram page asking score predictions for Saturday’s game. We received many responses and added them to our sports segment! The goal is to become memorable to our students now so that they consider tuning into our show as alums.

This story was written as an assignment in JOUR403: Television News Production with Professor Stacy Scholder. Annenberg Media student editors also reviewed the story and published it per newsroom guidelines.