Newsjacking: The 5 Stages of a News Story

October 11, 2017 / by Lucas Wiseman

There are several ways to increase your brand’s exposure through earned media, but one of the most effective ways is through newsjacking. 

Newsjacking is the process of inserting your brand into a trending conversation whether through traditional media or social media. But before you can become an expert at newsjacking, you first need to know the five stages of a news story.

Stage 1 - The story breaks

This is the genesis of the story, when a newsworthy moment happens that creates an opportunity of which you can take advantage. Identifying these moments is key to getting your brand out in front of the media to newsjack, but the important thing is to be prepared to strike quickly. 

Stage 2 – People (fans, journalists) seek out information

As the story breaks or the trend gains momentum, a thirst for information grows. For trends, people turn to social media to learn more and see what others are saying. For news, the media work feverishly to put together stories on the topic and desperately seek out sources.

Stage 3 – The buzz grows to a roar

Stories and trends that go viral quickly are like a snowball gaining momentum down a mountain. With every moment that passes, the snowball grows bigger and bigger. Fueled by more and more social content or more and more news stories being published, the buzz grows quickly.

Stage 4 – Reaching the peak of popularity

Once the story or trend generates its initial buzz, it enters the mainstream and hits a fever pitch. This is when even those who are not necessarily interested in the subject begin to see posts on social media or read stories. It has grown so popular that it reaches a wide audience.

Stage 5 – Fading fast

Unless the story or trend has a long shelf life, it begins to fade quickly and enter the final two stages – old news and done. Those who are late to the party can try to pick up the breadcrumbs of what is left to latch onto, but at this point you’re better off looking for the next big opportunity.

If you’re interested in learning more about newsjacking and how to prepare yourself to take advantage of opportunities like these, download our latest eBook – Newsjacking: The Essential Preparation Guide.


Download our PR Newsjacking Guide