Make Your Own CNN News: Nancy Grace Competition?

Looking for a DIY (do it yourself) news site to show TSA (transportation security administration) “pat downs” that are TMI (two much information)? Well put down your acronyms, and get out your cameras…

I’m not sure how long this has been around, but I find this consumer-generate “breaking news” site interesting. CNN has a consumer-generated news section.

fake cnn news girls box nancy grace
Move over, Nancy Grace. CNN has "make your own news" website. Live executions coming soon?

People are uploading photos of car wrecks, notes for missing children, and (most importantly) videos about the latest TSA agent who looked at them funny (Parenthetically I saw a guy snapping a photo of his mom getting a perfectly appropriate TSA pat-down, and he was politely told to put the camera away… there’s some saucy Nancy-Grace like news).

  • The bad news: the “most viewed” videos or photos have been seen only a dozen times or so. It’s not popular, and akin to setting up your own VHS camera and showing your homemade “news report” to your friends.
  • The good news: it has a high perceptual value of importance and credibility despite the “not vetted by CNN news” disclaimer. It’s on CNN.com and listed as “breaking news.” So if it was produced well… it would be hard for someone to internalize the disclaimer.

How long before people start packaging up fake “product reviews” and using CNN to distribute them? I gather someone at CNN has the sad task of seeking and killing spam, but it seems like a spammer or infomercial’s playground… or at least a few Nancy Grace impersonators. I wonder if CNN would pull the content if someone took the “Nancy Grace model” just one step further and actually performed a live execution of the victim of the news report. Or at least a lynch mob.

Your Blog Voice is Hoarse

Your blog sucks. Sorry to be the one to break it to you, but if it’s any comfort… mine does too. So let’s together learn “the art of storytelling and the science of journalism.” A new book promises to help us find our authentic voice and “craft bold content that will resonate with prospects and buyers and encourage them to share it with others.”

Content Rules (part of the "New Rules of Social Media") addresses content strategically and broadly -- from text to videos

Ann Handley and C.C. Chapman just launched “Content Rules: How to Create Killer Blogs, Podcasts, Videos, Ebooks, Webinars (and More) That Engage Customers and Ignite Your Business.” Here’s the book site, and the book on Amazon.

Disclosure: It’s part of David M. Scott’s “New Rules of Social Media,” and my Beyond Viral is part of the same series, although its name is slightly shorter.

I quite like this truism from a review on “Convince and Convert” by¬†Jay Baer:

The inherent tension in marketing is that companies always want to talk about themselves and their products or services. Everyone else, meanwhile, only wants to know what those products or services can do for them. Creating content as a cornerstone of your marketing allows you to truly place yourself in your customer’s shoes, to adopt their vantage points, and to consider their thoughts, feelings, and needs. In short, it allows you to get to know the people who buy from you better than any customer survey or poll ever could.

Here’s a paragraph from the book to which I most relate.

ann hadley
True dat, yo.

But a few nuggets regarding video from chapter 16’s “Video: Show Me the Story”:

  • Video content is 50 times more likely to appear on the first page of search results than your standard text-based content (citing Forrester Research)
  • Stop thinking that you need to make a viral video to be successful… focus on the story you are going to tell
  • When creating videos say yourself, “why would the people I want to reach want to watch this?”