Sweeps, Lies &        Local News

May 3, 2019

GC Media has been monitoring several stations in April and May. Guess what? All the stations are producing better newscasts during the May book than prior to this Sweep. While everyone should be happy that the product is now better, that will not change many viewer’s loyalty or the number of times they watch in a week. Brands fail when they are not consistently delivered.

What would your reaction be if you went to a McDonalds and were told you could not get their special sauce because it was not a month that they cared about their customers? Many news organizations operate just that way. They fail to serve their customers 52 weeks a year. When they follow this erratic pattern, viewers have no idea what to expect from them. As a result, those stations do not increase their loyal viewer base and they never become dominant.

The truth is that every newscast must be produced like it is the most important news program of the year. That means:

·       Anchors, including substitutes, must be on their game.

·       Producers must strive to create a memorable viewer experience.

·       Original content is generated for every newscast.

·       Reporters go beyond gathering facts and tell emotionally-connected stories.

·       Writing is clear and concise.

·       Posts and tweets are interesting, and entice people to watch or, at least, interact with the station.


This requires a station to build a culture. When that culture is engrained in every staff member’s mind, you will have a dominant news organization.

As David Ogilvy said, “Don't bunt. Aim out of the ball park. Aim for the company of immortals.” I will add, “Do it every day.” 




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