World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers

How to make a news story go viral: the pizza factor

World News Publishing Focus

World News Publishing Focus
Your Guide to the Changing Media Landscape

How to make a news story go viral: the pizza factor

A "sense of sameness" makes the reader feel "part of the story," says Kalita.

She also says the time to think about getting people to share a story is when it is conceived – not when the reporter is finished writing it.

To illustrate both points: When Quartz decided that it needed to cover the elections in Kenya, it was clear that the usual distant, colorless piece with survey results and quotes from the candidates was out of the question. Nobody would relate to a story like that, so nobody would share it.

So a reporter interviewed an entrepreneur who had invested a lot of money in a pizza operation in Kenya and was scared of the possible effects of the election outcome on the business climate in the country. The approach worked – the story was shared.


Anton Jolkovski's picture

Anton Jolkovski


2014-10-14 12:57

Author information

The World Editors Forum is the organisation within the World Association of Newspapers devoted to newspaper editors worldwide. The Editors Weblog (, launched in January 2004, is a WEF initiative designed to facilitate the diffusion of information relevant to newspapers and their editors.

World Publishing Expo & Digital Content Expo

The leading exhibition for technology to publish news on mobile, in print and online, featuring the two free conferences – Digital Media World & Print World – plus expert Guided Tours.

© 2020 WAN-IFRA - World Association of News Publishers

Footer Navigation