How to Get Your Story on WMC Action News 5

I get daily calls, emails and social media messages from people making three main requests:

  1. How to book an in-studio appearance on the WMC Action News 5 weekend morning show?
  2. Asking us to send a camera to their event. 
  3. Asking for coverage of something happening in the community. 

I thought it might help to explain how media coverage works.

FYI: Reporters and anchors never decide what content airs on TV news.  Producers make all the decisions with regards to what they want in their shows.

Before you contact producers, make sure you have all the information they need (who, what, where, when, why, how) for your event.   That should include a press release, flyer, photos and video.

Keep in mind that your event must have community impact and be open to the public.  In addition, news departments don’t sell products.  You must buy commercial time from the sales department to sell your product.

 

1. BOOKING AN IN-STUDIO, MORNING SHOW APPEARANCE:

You should directly contact the specific producer for the show on which you want to appear.

Be sure to use a SUBJECT LINE like “Saturday morning show appearance request” so the producer and anchor know the email is for his or her specific show.  We each receive roughly 1,000 emails per day so we need very specific subject lines.

 

WMC IN-STUDIO INTERVIEW BOOKING CONTACT

Weekend morning show on WMC Action News 5

(show times range from 6:00-10 a.m.)

Send your request to: 

Producer Ashleigh Ausburn, aausburn@wmctv.com or 901-772-7802

and

Producer Kenneth Ayers, kayers@wmctv.com or 901-722-7854

  • NOTE: Morning show producers work overnight shifts so you will likely get a voicemail, if you call during regular business hours.

 

2. REQUESTING A CAMERA TO COME TO YOUR EVENT:

The producers (a team of 30 decision makers in our newsroom) arrange for crews to come out to you the day of your event.  After sending an email request, you might also call the assignment desk by 9 a.m. the day of your event as a reminder to newsroom planners.

CONTACT TO ASK WMC TO SEND A CREW TO YOUR EVENT

These are 24/7 contacts

Producers: desk@wmctv.com

Assignment Desk: 901-726-0416 

NOTE: It’s a good idea to plan to take photos/video of the event yourself and email the images with information about the event to producers that day, in case our crew cannot attend due to breaking news.

3. REQUESTING COVERAGE FOR A COMMUNITY ISSUE:

Compose an email explaining your story proposal.  Be sure to include who is involved, what led to this moment, where this is happening, when this happened or is happening, why this is happening and how this is happening. 

Include a contact number, photographs, video and important web links.

CONTACT TO ASK WMC TO COVER YOUR STORY:

Producers: desk@wmctv.com

Assignment Desk: 901-726-0416 

WORTH NOTING

Newsrooms have three shifts: Overnight, day-side and night side.  Each shift has limited contact (mostly email only) with the other shifts because we are in the building at different times.

I hope this helps!

~Kontji

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