Video producer, Newsweek; President, Haddad Media
For a magazine like Newsweek, covering the 2008 presidential campaign can be as competitive an endeavor as the campaign itself. As such, tiptoeing into online video wasnât an option.
Enter Tammy Haddad, a former producer for MSNBC who has shown the magazine world that producing compelling video content doesnât have to be an expensive proposition. Armed with what sheâs affectionately dubbed the âTam Cam,â a $750 digital camera from B&H, Haddad leaned on her past political contacts, and hit the campaign trail.
Haddad says she beat her former employers to exclusive campaign interviews with John McCain and Ted Kennedy with a D.I.Y. work-ethic. âWe dropped it into the news cycle while the guys from Nightline were looking for their lattes,â Haddad says about the McCain interview.
âSheâs unstoppable,â says Newsweek.com editor Deidre Depke. When Haddad is on the road covering the campaign, Depke will get, on average, 12-15 videos a day. In any given month, Newsweekâs videos get between 5 and 10 million combined playsâa far cry from the 100,000 plays they were getting a couple years ago.
In February, Haddad coordinated a five-hour live Webcast covering the Super Tuesday primaries. It cost $2,000 to produce, and quickly found a sponsor, Dodge. It was streamed by roughly 100,000; they did another one for the so-called Potomac Primaries a week later. Next up for Haddad and co. is a live Webcast of the Popeâs visit to the U.S.âan exclusive Haddad has dubbed a âPopecast.â
âIt is to me just like cable,â Haddad said at a magazine conference recently. âYou remember when we told you magazines, âHey, people arenât going to wait for printâ? Now, you have the opportunity to say to them that you arenât going to wait for TV.â
VITAL STATS: Newsweek videos get anywhere between 5 and 10 million combined plays per month.
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