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Writing for Social Media
@stevebuttry
LSU Media Writing Class
November 2, 2015
Tweet during class
• At least 3 tweets #manship2010
• Use your account & post if you want
• Write on laptop or notebook & ...
Whatever your platform …
• Get to the point quickly
• Keep it brief (even if not limited)
• Consider images & make writing...
Opinions in social media
• Opinions aren’t inherently bad
journalism (editorials, columns, cartoons,
commentary, etc.)
• O...
therealverge
on Snapchat
Tanya Sichynsky,
USA Today
Social media = journo tool
• Monitored competition
• Found neighbor who tweeted at TV
station
• Checked neighbor’s Faceboo...
Social media as a source
• How do you know a source is genuine?
• How does the source know?
• Check photos, location, time...
• Posting too often
annoys friends, fans
• No 140 limit but
short is best
• Good questions start
conversations
• Engage, d...
Breaking news on Twitter
• Tell unfolding story
• Capture the moment
• Tweet verified facts
• Say what you don’t know
• Cr...
#Hashtag tips
• Use existing hashtag if there is one
• Search before launching hashtag (avoid
duplication)
• Look for seco...
Crowdsource
Crowdsource
Writing benefits of Twitter
• Paste lead into tweet box. If it’s >140,
challenge whether it’s too long
• 140 characters gi...
Even in longer writing …
Whether you’re writing a long
story for a newspaper or magazine,
or a political speech or a book,...
Franklin Delano Roosevelt
@FDR
We have nothing to fear but fear
itself. #NewDeal
Anne Frank
@AnnesDiary
Despite everything, I believe that
people are really good at heart.
#DiaryofaYoungGirl
President John F. Kennedy
@JFK
Ask not what your country can do
for you – ask what you can do for
your country. #NewFronti...
Rachel Carson
@RachelCarson
In nature nothing exists alone.
#SilentSpring
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
@MLKing
I have a dream today! #Freeatlast
Ronald Reagan
@TheGipper
Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this
wall! #Freedom
Let’s see (and hear)
your tweets
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Writing for Social Media

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Writing tips for Manship School MC2010 classes

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Writing for Social Media

  1. 1. Writing for Social Media @stevebuttry LSU Media Writing Class November 2, 2015
  2. 2. Tweet during class • At least 3 tweets #manship2010 • Use your account & post if you want • Write on laptop or notebook & don’t post if you prefer • No more than 140 characters • You decide content: quote, commentary, question, photo, observation, etc.
  3. 3. Whatever your platform … • Get to the point quickly • Keep it brief (even if not limited) • Consider images & make writing fit w/ photo or video • Consider tone (what will make people want to RT, share, engage?) • Rewrite
  4. 4. Opinions in social media • Opinions aren’t inherently bad journalism (editorials, columns, cartoons, commentary, etc.) • Opinions can be troublesome for some journalists in some positions or orgs • Know whether opinions are appropriate for your media role
  5. 5. therealverge on Snapchat
  6. 6. Tanya Sichynsky, USA Today
  7. 7. Social media = journo tool • Monitored competition • Found neighbor who tweeted at TV station • Checked neighbor’s Facebook page • Found post w/ neighbor’s email • Reporter tracked down neighbor, got story & more photos
  8. 8. Social media as a source • How do you know a source is genuine? • How does the source know? • Check photos, location, timeline for context, clues • Ask to call you or connect in person • Grab screenshots
  9. 9. • Posting too often annoys friends, fans • No 140 limit but short is best • Good questions start conversations • Engage, don’t intrude • Make a point in 140 • Story can unfold in multiple tweets • Hashtags help more w/ search, conversation • Engagement not as intrusive
  10. 10. Breaking news on Twitter • Tell unfolding story • Capture the moment • Tweet verified facts • Say what you don’t know • Crowdsource • Use hashtag
  11. 11. #Hashtag tips • Use existing hashtag if there is one • Search before launching hashtag (avoid duplication) • Look for secondary hashtagsHashtags help find sources • Use regular hashtags: #GeauxTigers #TakeTheCrown
  12. 12. Crowdsource
  13. 13. Crowdsource
  14. 14. Writing benefits of Twitter • Paste lead into tweet box. If it’s >140, challenge whether it’s too long • 140 characters gives great practice at getting to the point
  15. 15. Even in longer writing … Whether you’re writing a long story for a newspaper or magazine, or a political speech or a book, whatever you write, consider boiling the essence down to a single tweet.
  16. 16. Franklin Delano Roosevelt @FDR We have nothing to fear but fear itself. #NewDeal
  17. 17. Anne Frank @AnnesDiary Despite everything, I believe that people are really good at heart. #DiaryofaYoungGirl
  18. 18. President John F. Kennedy @JFK Ask not what your country can do for you – ask what you can do for your country. #NewFrontier
  19. 19. Rachel Carson @RachelCarson In nature nothing exists alone. #SilentSpring
  20. 20. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. @MLKing I have a dream today! #Freeatlast
  21. 21. Ronald Reagan @TheGipper Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall! #Freedom
  22. 22. Let’s see (and hear) your tweets

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