The online video news programs you’re about to see aren’t the typical reporter on camera news rundowns you’re used to seeing from most news websites. Nope. Not at all. These videos are engaging, fun, interesting and addictive.
Andddd these aren’t easy to pull off. Each show seems to have a team behind it to pull of the episodes.
I’m offering these up because many news orgs are experimenting with daily rundown videos of the papers’ stories, and some news videos aren’t turning out so hot.
That doesn’t mean your news org can’t learn to make engaging videos, but just that good video takes work. So without further adiue, check out some great online news shows.
Wallstrip.com – Stock Culture Meets Pop Culture
Challenge: Host is also an actor with experience in front of a camera. Find the most fun-loving person in your newsroom and you might have a star.
How to use the Wallstrip format: Think news, think entertainment. Think of a story that might need some explaining. Wallstrip mostly focuses on a limited number of stories (even just one) to explain to viewers. Whatever you do, don’t follow Wallstrip’s lead on headlines. Put some keywords in your headlines! Think about what people are searching for and match the search terms.
Mahalo Daily – Tech stories for people who aren’t total techies, but like technology
Challenge: Must be able to be spontaneous. A reporter in this show needs the ability to help interviewees comfortable and ready to reveal their secrets and passions. Maybe not secrets, but other people need to be comfortable on camera.
How to use the Mahalo format: This is a great way to show video stories on location. For example, is there a new store in your town, go visit it and have the shopowner explain it on camera. And get your own music! (Bonus show to check out for sit-down interviewing format)
WebbAlert – Your Daily Tech Round-Up
Fast-paced multi-story format gets the news across quickly, with a little commentary. Really awesome that they include videos, photos of sites they are talking about and they use quotes from subjects in the stories when reporting stories.
Challenge: Someone has to write the script and someone else has to be able to ad-lib it on camera. Also, host must be a fast-talker with a clear delivery :).
How to use WebbAlert format: If your news org is mentioning a few stories in your daily video, this is the way to do it. Have someone deliver the stories fast, with a little commentary, and include images in your videos!!! Also, MAKE SURE YOU BLOG YOUR VIDEO. Look at the WebbAlert page, they blog all the stories in their video and include links!
Rocketboom – Daily news videos with cheeky humor
Pros: Rocketboom is the original daily news roundup. That’s right! They’ve got a fun-loving host that doesn’t take the news overly seriously. Rocketboom also opens its show up to correspondents who can send in videos about what they are doing. They also do theme shows like “casual Fridays” which don’t have anything to do with news.
Challenge: Sometimes format isn’t consistent enough to follow. I don’t watch Rocketboom after too often since Amanda Congdon left, but the show’s format is still similar to the way it used to be.
How to use Rocketboom format: Be fun, engage your audience. This could be a great way to get user-submitted material on your news site that is genuine. Make your audience video correspondents for your site. Can you imagine how honored people will feel???
Working Webware – Interviews with creators of web 2.0 apps for everyone
No video embed. Ughhhh. Note to everyone, make your player video shareable, or lose big time. Yup, I said lose.
Pros: For people interested in business, this format works great. Not a lot of fancy editing needed, it’s simple and straightforward.
Challenge: If your show doesn’t have an interesting guest, it could easily stink. In this format, the reporters basically toss questions at the business leader and that person can chat it up however they want. No hard hitters here. But if you are in an active enough town, this could generate some interest in your business community.
How to use the Webware format: Booom! Easy! Get a couple reporters at a table with a business leader and make a name for yourself! What a quick and easy way to make your org notable in the business community. This is free PR, people will be begging to get on your show. Instant relevancy!
C|NET’s Mailbag – Reader feedback for C|Net answered by executive editor Molly Wood
No video, sorry. C|Net doesn’t allow for embeddable video. Lame! That’s the biggest drawback to C|Net’s video, and the player tends to freeze on my Firefox.
Pros: Awesome way to interact with readers. Get their questions right out there in front and have fun with them. Imagine how great it must feel for those users to get their questions answered and singled out!
Challenge: Have someone who is able to react to letters to the paper. That means someone has to read the many letters and have something interesting to say about them. Work.
How to use C|Net’s Mailbag format: Just like they do! This could be one of the easiest to start an opinion editor off with. Give it a go!
The Total Rad Show – Three guys talking Entertainment, believe it
Challenge: Can be boring if you have boring people talking. Lack of visual elements can turn people off, but also allows people to listen to the video in the background, so that could be a pro!
How to use the Totally Rad Show’s format: Find your most interesting, entertainment-driven people in the newsroom, no matter who they are, and put them in front of a blue screen. Make sure they have some chemistry, and get going. Obviously it won’t be that easy, but you can see that an entertainment chat-session can work.
Do you know of any other shows that should influence the way news websites do video? Put ‘em in the comments!