Have a story idea?
Communications and Marketing gets its best story ideas from faculty and staff members who contact us with great information from their classrooms, departments, offices, or units. We encourage you to read our tips below.
When deciding if a story idea is a good fit for Albany Law School's news outlets (albanylaw.edu, the alumni magazine, news releases, and social media channels), Communications and Marketing staff must determine whether the story will advance awareness of the academic and research achievements happening on campus; showcase current students, faculty/staff or alumni; and support the Law School's local, regional, and national reputation.
What to think about when considering story ideas
- Why is this important? Why should readers care? How will this impact how readers live, work, play or engage with the School?
- What is unique about the topic? Is this something that has not been done before? What is new or different? (This is especially important if the topic has been covered before or is a recurring event.)
- Is the timing right? What is new and interesting that is not just in the planning stages, but has happened or is happening? (News releases about upcoming events are an exception.)
- Is there a tie-in to something going on in the world right now or a current trend in the industry?
- Is there a human-interest angle to the story? Are there any individuals with whom the audience can identify?
- How does this story advance the School? How does it support the law school's efforts or strategic priorities?
Characteristics of great stories
- Have a human element
- Make sense to the average reader (are written in plain language so they are easily understood)
- Are interesting beyond the walls of Albany Law School's campus (Ask yourself: If you were not connected with the School, would you still read an article about this subject?)
- Engage readers while also supporting the School's brand
- Have broad appeal and matter to people of varied backgrounds
- Clearly illustrate positive outcomes or show how the law school's work is producing positive and quantifiable results
These types of stories typically garner the most attention
- Research, scholarship, or teaching happening at Albany Law that directly benefits society
- The work of a colleague or student in your department/office/school that excites you
- Projects or programs that enhance the quality of life, stimulate the economy, improve healthcare or education, or otherwise positively influence the world in tangible ways
- Philanthropy that changes students' lives or enables the law school to accomplish something extraordinary
- Something that inspires alumni or donors to give to Albany Law
- Work that has extraordinary outcomes or success
Information to have on hand when you submit a story idea
- Who is/are the primary person/persons involved in the story? Any background information on main participants, speakers, researchers, etc., that you can provide is helpful.
- What is the story? Provide as many details as possible.
- If there is a time element, when is this happening? Be specific.
- If location matters, where is this taking place?
- Why should anyone care? What makes this story special or of potential interest to others?