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#Tip: Note these ways to optimise images for Twitter’s in-stream preview

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“If you’ve got a story which is around a map or a graphic but you don’t bother to crop that image properly, you’re effectively killing your own story,” the BBC’s  Mark Frankel told Journalism.co.uk earlier this year.

Twitter got a lot more visual when it rolled out in-stream previews for images late last year, meaning photos posted in a tweet were automatically expanded without users having to click on them.

However, getting it right isn’t as foolproof as it sounds, as the image below shows.

So to avoid giving your own hard work the kiss of death, take a look at this infographic from visual.ly.

It includes handy hints such as the recommended size and crop ratio for landscape images, and how to upload a portrait image which doesn’t accidentally lop off your subject’s head.

 

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#Tip: How often should you be posting to social media?

Image by shawncampbell on Flickr. Some rights reserved.

Image by shawncampbell on Flickr. Some rights reserved.

Social media might be a great tool for communication, but we all know someone who is a chronic over-sharer.

There’s nothing worse than having your timelines full of someone else’s verbal diarrhoea (and if the person in question is you, it’s a sure-fire way to get yourself unfollowed).

So how many times should you be posting to Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Google+?

This post on the Buffer blog highlights the importance of striking “the balance between informative and annoying”.

While it doesn’t exactly deliver a cut-and-dried answer, it does offer recommendations from a range of sources – including Buffer’s own strategy for social sharing.

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#Tip: Remember these guides to online content length

April 1st, 2014 | No Comments | Posted by in Top tips for journalists
Image by Thinkstock

Image by Thinkstock

In print, the parameters for article length, headlines, picture arrangement and more have been handed down over generations, tried and tested over centuries to determine what best draws readers’ attention through an article.

Reading gravity is central to article lay-out and space limitations dictate how long articles should be, how they fit around images, and where they appear on the page. On the web, all of that goes out the window.

Or does it?

A recent blog post from Buffer collects results from multiple studies on the “ideal length” of Facebook and Google+ posts, tweets, headlines, blogs, paragraph width, email subject lines and other online publishing platforms, based on the level of engagement they received.

Screenshot from Buffer

Screenshot from Buffer

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#Tip: How to build your own personal brand

umbrella

This video on Poynter shows how journalist Robert Hernandez has built a successful personal brand on Twitter under his @webjournalist person, which has more more than 11,500 followers.

Hernandez, digital journalism professor at USC Annenberg, reveals he doesn’t “do branding” and that he had decided “I’m going to be who I am” – even if that includes making nerd jokes.

“I’m a journalist,” he explains. “Your credibility determines what you are known for.”

You can also check out Journalism.co.uk’s tips on personal branding as well as our podcast on the subject.

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#Tip: Social media guidelines for journalists

Image by shawncampbell on Flickr. Some rights reserved.

Image by shawncampbell on Flickr. Some rights reserved.

How much of a say should news outlets have over what their journalists post on social media?

If you’re in the process of putting together a set of social media guidelines for your company or are simply curious, take a look at this a list of social media guidelines from international news organisations including the BBC, Associated Press and Reuters.

The list was curated by Kelly Fincham, a journalism professor at Hofstra University in New York, who has also annotated each set of guidelines with a brief comment: “Exhaustive and excellent – particularly on retweets” (AP), “Must for aspiring sports journos” (ESPN), and, “In a nutshell: Don’t be stupid (BBC).

Hat tip to Marc Settle, project producer at the BBC College of Journalism, who tweeted about this list.

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#Tip: Useful tools for digital newsrooms in 2014

January 13th, 2014 | No Comments | Posted by in Data, Multimedia, Top tips for journalists
Image by JM. Some rights reserved.

Image by JM. Some rights reserved.

NewsWhip has put together a list of tools to help digital journalists brush up on their skills and stay ahead of the game this year.

The list of 10 tools every digital newsroom should be using in 2014 includes lots of useful tips for gathering, curating and visualising content.

Items on the list include the Storyful multisearch Chrome plug-in, which allows you to search multiple social networks from your browser bar, and Datawrapper, a quick and simple tool for visualising data.

Other tools include Google image search for verification and of course NewsWhip’s own social news monitoring platform, Spike.

We’ve also put together our own list of essential skills for journalists to hone in 2014. Online journalists can learn more about new digital skills and developments at our news:rewired  conference on Thursday 20 February, 2014.

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#Tip: Advice for journalists using LinkedIn

Image by Nan Palmero on Flickr. Some rights reserved.

Image by Nan Palmero on Flickr. Some rights reserved.

At our news:rewired conference in September we ran an entire session dedicated to LinkedIn, and focused on how journalists can use the platform to engage with the online community. A write-up of some of the tips shared during the workshop can be found on the event website.

Last week, the blog for the International Journalists’ Network published further advice on “how journalists can conduct more effective searches” using the platform. The collection of pointers came out of a Q&A with Yumi Wilson, corporate communications manager at LinkedIn.

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#Podcast: Using Instagram to find and share media with meaning

Image by Sean MacEntee on Flickr. Some rights reserved

Image by Sean MacEntee on Flickr. Some rights reserved.

The use of Instagram continues to spread among journalists, as news outlets test out different ways to share images, and now microvideo, with their existing audience and to reach new communities.

In this week’s podcast, we look at different examples of how Instagram has been used to share and gather images. As well as some of the initial lessons learned, we discuss the benefits for individual photographers or journalists and the media outlet overall.

We hear from:

  • Peter Bale, vice-president and general manager, CNN International Digital
  • Paul Moakley, deputy photo editor, Time magazine
  • Kathy Ryan, photo editor, The New York Times Magazine
With additional reporting by Alastair Reid, news reporter, Journalism.co.uk.
You can hear future podcasts by signing up to the Journalism.co.uk podcast feed on iTunes.
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#Tip: Take a note of this list of tools and apps via the ONA conference

November 14th, 2013 | No Comments | Posted by in Top tips for journalists
Toolbox

Image by Jenn Durfey on Flickr. Some rights reserved.

Reporters from Gannett (which owns Newsquest in the UK, and a number of US-based outlets), who attended the ONA conference last month, were using this Tumblr blog to look at the expert pointers shared and subjects discussed during the event. One post in particular offers a great list of tools and apps which journalists can use for a multitude of tasks, including a number of ways to track social media, such as during breaking news events.

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#Tip: Catch up on video from BBC social media event

social-poynter

The BBC College of Journalism has published a collection of videos from its social media conference, which took place last month, on YouTube. Each video covers a session, with 11 in total. Subjects looked at include breaking news, curation, user-generated content and investigative journalism, and feature plenty of inspiration and expert advice on best practice.

Journalism.co.uk followed the event from afar via the livestream, and reported on some of the tips shared on using social media, as well as a look at the impact of such technology on investigative reporting.

If you have a tip you would like to submit to us at Journalism.co.uk email us using this link.
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