Recap: I interviewed World War Z author Max Brooks when he visited Mansfield University in November 2012. Down-to-earth, direct and honest, Brooks is an interviewer’s dream.
I had read the book in preparation and knew from hints in the pop culture press, that the movie would generate international buzz.
We posted the two full interviews. In May, the Vanity Fair cover story on Brad Pitt and the movie World War Z hit the stands. That was the opening shot of the international publicity and promotion for the movie.
That’s when we released the five minute clip. Numerous bloggers and sites, including Fandango, linked our video and posted blogs based on their interpretation of the interview.
I talked in the last post about the mistake I made which probably cost me several thousand views.
Now for the bit of luck I had which gained us several thousand views. That came in June, when Brooks declined to talk with mainstream media.
That left them no choice but to reference the Mansfield University video interview for information.
Two of the biggest media outlets –the Associated Press and Yahoo News — did articles on the movie and the book, using the Mansfield University interview as a source of information.
Both of these articles appeared on the same day, boosting the views of our video by over 1,000 in 12 hours.
Higher Ed communications guru Dick Jones explained the implications of this.
“The fact that the Max Brooks interview at Mansfield University was referenced by Yahoo and The Associated Press resulted in worldwide media attention for the school,” Dick said. “That’s because Yahoo and AP are important third-party indicators of quality to media outlets and individual news consumers everywhere. If AP and Yahoo run with a story, then editors and news directors at all media outlets will view it in a much more favorable light and are much more likely to run it. And so it proved with this story. Once given that seal of approval by AP and Yahoo, there was no stopping this one.”
He added that there are a handful of traditionally credible news sources. “The AP is right at the top. Yahoo, while much newer, has great clout also due to its platform as the default news provider for millions of individuals.”
Dick concluded by saying, “One take-away from this project has been the affirmation that for AP and Yahoo—and by inference for many other media outlets—YouTube interviews are a credible on-the-record source for journalists today—given equal value with original reporting.”
The other take away is that while the media has changed, the core values of good reporting, honest interviews and solid facts, remain of utmost importance.