10 topics guaranteed to grab a journalist’s attention

Clarion Communications asked its news media contacts what makes a good story for a journalist. Aside from the obvious (enormous scandals, crimes, outrages, impropriety and accidents) what are the key topics or ideas that make news journalists sit up and take notice?

Here are the 10 top stories they simply love to cover...

1. Health breakthroughs

Whether new ‘superdrugs’ or scientific research about whether a food or activity is good or bad for us, journalists love a health story.

2. A lifestyle shift

They love showing the way the world is changing and that certain traditions are now dying out, whether that be the death of family mealtimes or pressures of modern life meaning we have to work for longer.

3. Animals pictures

Newspapers never tire of running cute or dramatic wildlife photos, especially if they appear to show unusual or rarely seen behaviour.

4. A magic number – Research which produces a great statistic

Journalists love a specific and exact figure which feels like it has been produced by applying science to a problem or situation.

5. Ground-breaking solution to everyday problems

A novel design which solves an issue we’ve all encountered tends to go down well.

6. We are the best! We are the worst!

Research which shows this country excels or fails in comparison to other nations. They’re quite happy to contradict themselves pretty quickly on this front...

7. Superlatives – The biggest/most expensive/tallest/heaviest

Newspapers like the simplicity of being able to say something is a record breaker because it can give the object instant ‘wow’ factor.

8. A strong list

A comprehensive league table can go down well, whether that sheds light on our preferences or is life advice from an authoritative source. But the top 10 has been superseded by the top 20. Or the top 50...

9. Any suggestion that Brussels bureaucrats are messing unnecessarily with our lives

Newspapers love to ridicule and poke fun at EU regulations that might interfere.

10. Identifying a time of life truism

If a certain age can be identified as the time when we are busiest, the happiest, the time at which we are most confident or feel most stressed, it makes a good talking point.

Clarion Communications is a PR agency with specialist skills in consumer news generation for brands and companies.

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