Press and Journal

Switch to desktop Register Login

Eric Wise

Eric Wise is a stay-at-home dad with three children, ages 11, 9 and 3. He was formerly a reporter for the now-defunct Hershey Chronicle newspaper, and he has 10 years of experience in public relations with four different statewide associations. His home improvement column, "Around the House," appeared in daily and weekly newspapers around Pennsylvania from 2007 to 2009. He is a graduate of Hershey Senior High School and Elizabethtown College. He enjoys reading, playing guitar and photography. 

Is this some kind of stunt? What are you people trying to accomplish over there?

Rate this item
(0 votes)

I bet some of you have, at one time or another, taken some type of audience survey. Web sites and magazines survey readers all the time about their experience to find out what they liked and didn't like.

 

As a reporter and publications editor, I have been through many of these. Sometimes the process gets agonizing when the number of people involved grows larger and larger. Everyone has his or her own idea what to include, when to ask it and how it should be worded. I understand that many types of questions allow you to gather information that you might want. At the same time, the wording of questions influences the answers. You see this all the time from political surveys and special interest groups who just happen to conduct surveys that confirm their bias.

 

At times, I have gathered some information about readers through these surveys. For my own purposes, I have done my own survey with a focus group that was quick and cost very little. I bought a cheap pack or two of magic markers. I gave everyone in the group a copy of the publication, a magic marker and an envelope to fit the publication. I simply asked the focus group to circle exactly what they read and mail it back to me. This humbling experience gave me insight into how much time people spent with the publication, what they actually read, and what drew their attention. In a questionnaire, few people will say, "I read two articles, and glance at some photos, headlines and captions as I page through the rest of the issue." The magic marker survey told me that.

But I also liked those longer surveys, too. The best part about them was that the boss (sometimes a publisher, an executive vice president or department head) was so interested that he or she collected the surveys and sat down for a few hours to scour, dissect and digest the results. Most importantly, this kept him or her out of my hair and allowed me to concentrate for a couple hours.

 

When it comes to finding out what people want to read about, hear about and watch on TV or a movie, it's actually very difficult to get them to tell you exactly what they want. "Oh, I don't know," say some, while others might rattle off their favorites and tell you do "something like that."

 

I found the answer to this question in the middle of my career, and it's simpler than you think. In fact, it's so simple that a three-year-old could tell you (they might even tell you clearer than some adults!). Here it is: "Tell me a good story."

 

Telling a good story is a simple concept, yet it takes a lot of work. It's not easy to find truly great stories and be able to write about all of them. Your editor will give you a shot glass, and you go to Niagara Falls and bring back the best water. Yet that's the way I look at producing articles, columns and blogs.

 

There you have it. In my Press And Journal community blog, I will be posting as I can. I hope that my posts tell you a good story, provide some interesting tidbit that you never heard before, or give you a nugget of an idea to think about for the day. Thanks for reading, and I will see you back here soon.

 

610 comments

  • Thotogeomolog

    プラダユニオン プラダ パンプス celine ラゲージバッグ プラダの悪魔 プラダ パチモン プラダ材質 セリーヌ 文学 セリーヌ + う セリーヌ buyma celine よだれかけバック ブランド 人気 セリーヌ ウォレット celine dion eyes me lyrics celine ホームページ love you celine dion lyrics プラダ 2012 プラダ ジーンズ セリーヌ ブランド prada ロンドン prada outlet celine ツートン

    Thotogeomolog Saturday, 17 August 2013 07:26 Comment Link
  • Untortuar

    celine フィービー プラダ リュック メンズ セリーヌ wiki celine 小物 prada ニット セリーヌ 福岡 プラダ ホームページ セリーヌ ハンカチ セリーヌ ホリゾンタル prada ピンク 財布 セリーヌ 洋服 セリーヌ ヘンリー Celine + て セリーヌ + た セリーヌ 2wayショルダーバッグ ナノ ショッパー セリーヌ + ぅ celine dion jumeaux 7 jours セリーヌ カバ プラダ 本店 プラダvv030m Celine + p

    Untortuar Saturday, 17 August 2013 07:25 Comment Link
  • Untortuar

    プラダ アウトレット プラダ ルームシューズ prada ジャケット プラダ インフュージョンオム セリーヌ 時計 プラダ ウエストポーチ プラダ ポーチ 新作 セリーヌディオン the very best celine luggage lipstick プラダ デニムトート コピー prada wallet men celine dion(セリーヌ?ディオン Celine + ほ Prada + こ プラダ 腕時計 celine 日本語 セリーヌ アイフォンケース celine luggage celine when i fall in love prada 格安 celine キーケース

    Untortuar Saturday, 17 August 2013 06:03 Comment Link
  • Untortuar

    プラダん プラダ ヒールブーツ 通販 激安日本製 折り畳み傘 プラダ チェーンウォレット devil wears prada 動画メンズレインブーツ 人気レインシューズ ビジネス プラダ オンラインメンズ おしゃれ 長靴水着 ショッピング逢沢りな ビキニ プラダ + そ傘 強い prada 神戸エミリオプッチ セール prada ポスター prada espadrilleいんてりあアンブレラメンズ通販サイト

    Untortuar Saturday, 17 August 2013 02:18 Comment Link
  • slattonmaa

    =

    slattonmaa Friday, 16 August 2013 10:59 Comment Link
  • mayorgaba

    =

    mayorgaba Friday, 16 August 2013 10:48 Comment Link
  • smyrlshaw

    =

    smyrlshaw Thursday, 15 August 2013 15:59 Comment Link
  • alexinegru

    =

    alexinegru Thursday, 15 August 2013 15:49 Comment Link
  • Thotogeomolog

    celine logo prada リュック 2012 プラダ 台湾 プラダ 長財布 ピンク プラダスポーツ 4va056 celine サングラス celine decade song Celine + だcelineprada リュック セリーヌ + v prada ゲイリー prada ダウンジャケット プラダ 新作 財布 プラダ パラシュート プラダ アウトレット 御殿場 celine ニット プラダ ロングブーツ プラダ 時代遅れ celine バッグ カバ celine dion lyrics

    Thotogeomolog Wednesday, 14 August 2013 10:37 Comment Link
  • Untortuar

    prada 98339 prada レザースニーカー プラダ アイフォンケース celine 財布 新作 celine キーケース セリーヌ 銀座 prada プラダ 51osa-fad3m1 prada 9gag プラダ インフュージョンオム celine nyc セリーヌ + 6 プラダ 長財布 メンズ セリーヌ 偽物 Prada + わ celine 傘プラダ アウトレット prada 池袋 プラダ トート デニム celine beverly hills プラダの財布 prada ユーロ

    Untortuar Wednesday, 14 August 2013 10:37 Comment Link

Leave a comment

Make sure you enter the (*) required information where indicated. HTML code is not allowed.