Blog for Saks! Enter here for your chance to win a spot on Saks Fifth Avenue’s freelance writing team. This is the third in a series of four posts brought to you by SaksPOV , designed to give bloggers the information, tools and opportunity to explore the journalistic potential of fashion blogging.
Being a fashion blogger is always fun, but getting the scoop on fashion news isn't always easy. (In fact, it's almost never easy.) But you too can stay above the fray with a little work and a whole lot of creativity. If you're looking to stay ahead of game on your fashion news take a look at these 25 ways to get the scoop on a story.
1. Bulk up your Twitter feed. Follow everyone and anyone that might be important to your writing. Sometimes designers, models, or other fashion notables drop hints that you can catch.
2. Constantly check your Twitter. Following those folks won't do a darn thing if you don't keep tabs on them.
3. Turning “news” into “fashion news.” There will be times where a normal piece of news can be turned into fashion related news. The downturn of the economy? How does that affect fashion?
4. Always ask the questions: Who? What? Where? When? Why? How? To get that kernel of information for a story.
5. Interview people in the field. Interviews are always a great way to get first hand information that they might not have revealed to any other news source. Make sure to ask the right questions (see above!).
6. Find the details and elaborate. Pay attention to the small stuff, it could lead to a bigger story.
7. Make the phone calls. Want to know the percentage of sales made online versus in store for a company? Call them for the scoop!
8. Introduce yourself when you are out and about. Hand out your card and let people know what you do. That way, if anyone ever has a tip, they can reach out to you.
9. Make the connection between stories. This will start to come along with practice. Think about current events in your field and try to make connections to reveal overarching themes that have been untapped.
10. Find a new angle. If a story is blowing up in fashion news, try not to just regurgitate it. Look for other ways to write about it, whether it be highlighting a different aspect, getting a quote from someone involved who hasn't been quoted, or adding in “expert” opinions on the matter.
11. Make friends in the biz. The easiest way to get the first pick of fresh stories is by making friends in the fashion industry of all levels. That way when they casually mention something that's going on at work, or they want something reported on, you are there to scoop it up.
12. Mark your calendar. Go to the events, fashion shows, the sample sales and get in the middle of it all.
13. Listen to the chatter. What is everyone discussing? What's the next big thing? You'd be surprised at how honing in other people's conversations can spark a story.
14. Understand the non-story story. There are a lot of stories that start off as “non-stories” and can be molded into news stories. Again, it's about finding that small piece of information that you can expand into something bigger.
15. Check the websites. Small blogs, major magazine sites, fashion news sites, tech sites, etc. Be aware of what your competition is talking about so you can stay ahead.
16. Join forces with friends. Make other writer friends and share your experiences and stories. What might not work for one person's website might be the “scoop du jour” for you.
17. Visit the shops. There's nothing easier than stopping by shops, from the high end boutiques to the middle America malls, to observe what people are buying, or better yet, what brands are selling.
18. Send questions out on your social media. “I'm interviewing [said fashion designer] tomorrow. Anything you are dying to know?” You'd be surprised, sometimes you get suggestions you may have overlooked.
19. Get the other side of the story. The opposing view of a news story can sometimes be just as newsworthy.
20. Focus on the specifics. Use your investigative journalism skills and dig, dig, dig!
21. Find out who is affected. When something happens, someone is always affected, which almost always leads to a scoop.
22. Compare and contrast. Show two point of views next to each other and analyze what it all means. Part of presenting news is analyzing why it is important. You may see something no one else has picked up on.
23. Set up a tip hotline. Make your email accessible on your social media so people can send you story ideas. Be careful and check your sources, but sometimes a hidden gem will make its way to you.
24. Probe the press release. Getting an announcement is fine and dandy, but looking deeper past the face value could lead to a better story.
25. Keep a journal of your daily observances. Sometimes just simply writing down what you see and hear can get your wheels turning for a story.