Chapter 7: Creating News Features and Op-Ed

Prior to reading this chapter, I thought I had learned all I needed to about feature stories. However, I did not know that there are six common types of features, including case studies, application stories, research studies, backgrounders, personality profiles, and historical pieces (Public Relations Writing and Media Techniques).

A case study is a type of feature that is frequently used in product publicity. These features often tell how individual customers have benefitted from a company’s product or service or how another organization has used the product or service to improve efficiency or profits. Essentially, they are a form of third party endorsement or testimonial (Public Relations Writing and Media Techniques).

The text posed helpful questions to consider when writing a case study. They include:

1) What can be told about the company, its place in the industry, its size, and other details?

2) Why did the company first need the products or services in question?

3) Who was involved in the application?

4) What did the products or services do for those people? What can they do now, as a result of the products or services, that they couldn’t do before?

5) How does the solution save time and money and add quality?

6) Could the company get the same results with a competitive solution? If not, how does this solution provide savings that couldn’t otherwise be achieved?

7) What is the consumer contact protocol? Who should clear and approve the article (Public Relations Writing and Media Techniques)?

An application story, which is similar to a case study, focuses mainly on how consumers can use a product or service in new and innovative ways. The advantage to an organization is that it can show multiple, practical applications of a service or product over a period of time, generating increased consumer awareness and usage (Public Relations Writing and Media Techniques).

Research studies are features that include surveys, polls, and scientific studies which generally pertain some aspect of contemporary lifestyles or a common situation in the workplace (Public Relations Writing and Media Techniques).


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