A reporter friend of mine posted a status update on his personal Facebook page the other day, that is sure to have brought people to his local newscasts that night.
Carson Clark is a bureau chief for WHNT-Newschannel 19 in Huntsville, Alabama. He does a fine job from what I’ve seen of his stories online. Carson has been at WHNT for 10 years now and when his status update popped up on my Facebook page the other day, he even had me wanting to tune in from 150 miles away.
Carson’s status for Monday, posted around noon was this: “Carson Clark has said “newschannel 19″ for the last time. Story at 5.”
Makes it sound like he’s leaving the station and maybe he’s gotten a job so big his own station was going to cover it at 5 o’clock. He wasn’t and it didn’t. But because of that well-written tease, many viewers in the Tennessee Valley tuned in to that 5 o’clock newscast to find out what Carson was talking about.
Carson teased the fact that WHNT is no longer going to use “Newschannel 19” in its reporter sign-offs. Instead of being known as “Newschannel 19”, WHNT is simply “WHNT News 19”.
By the time that 5pm news went on the air, Carson had nearly 40 comments posted to his status. Jada wrote “Are you moving or staying local?”. Kerri wrote “Tell us, we’re dying to know.” At 4:35, Tina wrote “It’s almost 5 can’t wait to see what’s up!”
TV stations would love to have that kind of free publicity. And get this, 14 of the comments were posted via a mobile device so they didn’t visit the station’s website and didn’t get the tease from tv or anywhere else but Carson’s Facebook page.
Nice work Carson.
BTW, Carson has 396 friends, other anchors and reporters at 19 have friends who do not overlap Carson’s. So the net reach to viewers in the Valley could easily be in the thousands.
But of course, using Facebook and Twitter and any other social media application to bring viewers to the actual tv newscast or any business for that matter, is only as good as…… the tease.