Contents
  1. I. Introduction (10m)
  2. II. Making the Case (20m)
  3. III. Practicing Solutions Journalism (30m)
  4. IV. Case Study: The Montgomerey Advertiser (20m)
  5. V. Solutions for the Most Common Stumbling Blocks (40m)

Editor Toolkit

Setting a Vision

Screenshot: 'Vision and who we will be,' Bro Krift's presentation to the Montgomery Advertiser newsroom

In the fall of 2017, Krift presented his newsroom with a clear vision for the Advertiser -- a philosophical shift towards deep-dive solutions and enterprise-oriented reporting. Reporters would spend less of their time on routine spot news, focusing their effort on fewer but higher-value stories. Solutions journalism would be embedded in every beat, becoming integral to the reporting process. For every story, reporters were encouraged to think about the core question "who is doing it better?"

Selling Solutions Journalism

For the most part, reporters understood the concept and bought into it, recognizing that solutions reporting is just a different flavor of the enterprise reporting they were familiar with. But Krift saw a more powerful rationale. He recognized that most reporters want to do deeper, more meaningful stories. The new focus on enterprise reporting would give reporters freedom to be more selective about which stories they took on, allowing them to reconnect with their personal ambitions and sense of purpose. He also noted that solutions enterprise stories performed better than rote news coverage, with metrics showing readers read these stories more and for longer periods of time. “Everyone bought into it because it’s good journalism,” he says.

Institutionalizing Solutions Journalism in the Newsroom

Making the Change Accessible