This week I have been doing the groundwork for a factual programme for my Content Delivery University assignment which needs me to research and create a short feature for Channel 4’s Food Unwrapped. I’m going to be sharing with you my experiences of doing research and ringing people to find out information and potentially get some contributors for my feature.
Firstly, I needed to think about what food am I going to research. Coming up with ideas can be difficult but I remembered something my parents told me when I was younger 'if you eat cheese before bed it'll give you nightmares'. Then I had a light bulb moment! So I began my research into does cheese really give you bad dreams?
Using 'newsstand' (a university resource), I began sifting through newspaper articles and websites all about cheese and its dreamy qualities. I found that there hadn't been much research done on the subject as the British Cheese Board state that their study is "a first of its kind" (British Cheese Board, 2005). From this, I collated what I could find in a document and noted down all the notable people that were mentioned. This is where the phone bashing started.
Once I had got a list of phone numbers I would like to ring, I got out my notebook and started to write a little opening spiel that I would say and what questions I was going to ask. Along the lines of:
"Many of us dread actually making a call" (Sillers, n.d.) but to get over this little bit of phone fear, I prepared what I was going to open/end the call and what I was going to ask. By doing this it made me feel satisfied that I would be in control of the conversation and could lead what the other person was saying to get the best out of them.
I was pleasantly surprised by one phone call to the British Cheese Board. I rang them and it went straight to voicemail, so I left a voicemail asking for them to ring me back when suitable for them. With me thinking they won't get back to me, about half an hour later they rang me back and had a short but useful conversation about their study and how they would email me in a few days with the relevant contacts I would need to enhance my research.