Using Social Media to Listen

Sunday, February 28, 2010

Any journalist knows that they must constantly be listening to what is going on. Listening to the members of their community, officials and even the competition is key to discovering news. Now, social media can be added to the list.

Robert Quigley, social media editor for the Stateman, gives three tips to use social media to listen.

  • Read story comments - Stateman Business Editor Kathy Warbelow said, "[People's] comments have given up tipoffs on things like local layoffs...stores or restaurants opening or closing, the sudden stop of work on big construction projects and sometimes about companies we had not known about."

  • Besides tweeting, use Twitter just to listen - Follow users such as politicians, athletes, sports commentators, companies and other media outlets. These people and groups are reliable and informative.

  • Listen to your Facebook friends - Become friends with local people who can give information on what's going on within the community.

Social media is a good tool in discovering news. Several people use social sites to get their information, and if used well, it can be helpful in generating new story ideas.


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