March 14, 2017

Introducing SAM Assignments: Helping to Reduce Outreach Collision and Bring Newsroom Collaboration Full Circle

Almar Sheikh by Almar Sheikh

In 2017 more newsrooms will be investing in social media and UGC newsgathering tools than ever before. As social becomes increasingly important in newsrooms around the world we’re collectively experience growth and teething pains. One of those growth pains is how we handle outreach and permission requests. All too often newsrooms fumble over themselves during breaking news; rushing to clear content or get more information. And in doing so collide with other journalists and in many cases their own colleagues. 

As reported on First Draft News and by many experts, collision occurs after nearly every newsworthy event – when a story breaks on social media and social eyewitnesses become the front-line for news organizations everywhere. Once social content hits the web, multiple journalists all rush to request clearance in unison and eyewitnesses are bombarded with requests. This is what we here at SAM call outreach collision.

With public perception of media already suffering, this way of operation is not sustainable. Large news brands cannot afford to have multiple staff and divisions collide on the same piece of UGC, at the same time, publicly piling up requests. 

That is why today we couldn’t be more excited to launch SAM Assignments. Assignments will take all the ambiguity out of who is doing what when chasing UGC. And because this new feature lives directly inside of SAM’s collaborative social media CMS; it will allow assignments to be applied to nearly any kind of social media asset (Facebook through to Reddit). Below are some of the workflow highlights and how our new Assignments feature will work.

Leverage SAM’s collaborative features to ensure social media newsgathering is done more efficiently and ethically:

Notifications: never miss a breaking development or assignment with real-time notifications. Jump straight into a collection by clicking on the notification in your activity feed.

Tags: categorize your social assets using tags. This allows your colleagues to quickly gauge which stage in the workflow an asset is in.

Notes: use notes to communicate updates, details, or context surrounding a social asset. This communication trail is backed up within SAM, so there is never a need to worry about losing important information. 

*NEW* Assignments: clearly assign tasks and responsibilities to keep everyone organized and accountable. When your team knows who is working on what, efforts will be optimized and lapses in communication will be avoided.

Check out the video below to see the end-to-end workflow inside of SAM:

 

We also understand that many newsrooms are new to social media newsgathering. Knowing how to structure these processes or what steps to take might be a foreign concept for your organization. We’ve compiled this handy ‘collision prevention guide’ on what things to consider when design your newsroom UGC workflow. Download the free guide.