Tips and tricks | Dana Lacey

Tips and tricks

    The evolution of a breaking news story: Apple product launch

    Each year come fall, Apple releases a new iPhone, and the world drools over ever finite detail. To serve the readers that want-to-know-first with those that just want to know, Fast Company paired its live coverage of the keynote with an evolving overview of key highlights. They launched the overview ahead of their event with links to relevant stories, and maintained it throughout the product launch with fresh headlines, facts and photos. Readers landing on the page mid-event could see a real-time a recap of the most relevant info, making it easier to navigate the live tick tock coverage the FC was producing while also ensuring readers understand the most important bits of the story (price, release date, specs, and, of course, photos of the much-anticipated watch). The overview also replaced the need to produce the typical write-through; FC simply linked to all the post-event stories their team created to keep one main hub for all things Apple.

    Here's a look at how the live page overview changed throughout the event

    Pre-event promotion included an email reminder, details of what readers should expect and who would be producing the coverage.
    Pre-event page continued: note how FC leverages background stories via links.
    The first change to the overview happened moments into the event launch, when reporters confirmed there would be two versions of the iPhone 6.
    In addition to updating the text, an editor added new photos to the slideshow as soon as they became available.
    by dana
    The overview got more specific as the event went on, and focused on rumors either realized or squashed, as well as key details readers want the most (price, size, release date)
    by dana
    When the keynote discussion spent some time dissecting the iPhone's new camera, editors added a photo above the slideshow to draw readers' attention to it
    by dana
    When the much-anticipated watch was revealed, it took over the top spot from the camera photo.
    by dana
    As more watch photos became available, the top photo was removed and made the first photo in the slideshow, encouraging readers to flip through the various images.
    by dana
    This is what readers saw when they clicked to the second page of the slideshow -- FC knew readers wanted lots of pictures of the watch, so they put them at the front of the slideshow (rather than at the back)
    by dana
    This became the third image; meanwhile more info about the watch was offered below
    by dana
    By the end of the event, readers could see what would become the final write-through, which was updated with links. Note that there's now 17 photos in that slideshow; each was added in real time.
    by dana

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