News Nerdery: Apps for engaging storytelling

By Ashley Stalnecker and Zoe LaPorte

News organizations don’t need a lot of time or money to reach a wider audience on social media.

That’s one message Steven Ibanez, director of social engagement for Advance Digital, gave during his “News Nerdery 2.0” presentation at the Pennsylvania Press Conference on Saturday.

To reach more people on social media, Ibanez suggests these “news nerd” tools:

Image result for crowdTangle logo1. CrowdTangle
This app compares engagements (likes, shares, comments, etc.) among competitors on social media, such as Instagram, Facebook and Twitter. The app can show how different posts or tools perform in terms of audience reaction.

2. Facebook Live
Videos posted through Facebook Live will reach more viewers than other Facebook posts because Facebook notifies users and promotes live videos. Useful for breaking news.

3. YouTube Live
Similar to Facebook Live but more useful for longer videos, because YouTube viewers tend to have a longer attention span. Like Facebook, YouTube notifies channel subscribers to promote videos. Videos with nationwide appeal can be boosted on YouTube’s homepage, directing more traffic to the host channel. YouTube does require a channel to receive a one-time channel verification before streaming a live video. This typically takes 24 hours.

 4. Quik
Popular free video-editing app for Android and iOS. Allows users to quickly and easily overlay text on videos and then publish to Instagram stories or other social media platforms.

5. Canva
Canva allows users to create social cards, attractive or interesting photos that quickly inform the audience about stories or topics. Ibanez recommends paying the $9.95 monthly subscription for premium options to create a specific style or brand for the user’s publication, including templates and fonts.

6. Giphy
Giphy, available through an app or browser, converts videos to gifs. Gifs are short, fun to engage the audience and drive traffic back to a publication’s website.

7. Snapchat
Snapchat, a social media app, uses “stories” to cover events in specific locations. Snapchat Map directs the audience to breaking news and informs them of real-time happenings. The ability to search locations or events makes it easier for reporters to pinpoint witnesses in breaking news situations.

Image result for Adobe Spark logo8. Adobe Spark and Post Maker
Like Canva, Adobe Spark and Post Maker give users the ability to create social cards. Adobe Spark is harder to use than Canva but caters to users who appreciate the Adobe platform. Post Maker, a free app, offers a richer experience but isn’t as easy as Canva.

9. Repost/Later
To drive interaction on Instagram, use Repost or Later to share photos from other Instagram users. It is important to reach out to the photo’s owner before reposting, but users are typically happy to share their work.

10. Hype Type
This app is a quick way to create highly stylized images and videos with text overlays on the iOS system.

11. Google Photos
Google Photos archives photos and videos to the user’s Google account for easy management. Its AI program allows visual searches for people, places and things in photos and videos.

12. Videolicious
This video-editing app, designed for journalists, weaves together interviews, videos, photos and music to create a professional video production.


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