Talking to the Media Doesn’t Have to be Scary

By October 22, 2021Inbound Marketing

The spooky Halloween season is upon us, and the idea of responding to questions and comment requests from the news media might strike fear in the heart of some. However, the media is nothing to be afraid of, as long as you have properly prepared for an encounter. 

A little bit of prep — done the right way — can make all the difference. 

Trust and credibility with the media are the cornerstones of an excellent public image and a powerful brand. 

You can build that credibility by remembering the four Cs, and consistently putting these elements into practice: 

  1. Communicate openly and honestly, without distorting information.
  2. Show confidence in your company.
  3. Keep commitments and promises.
  4. Exhibit a spirit of cooperation.

Every media encounter is an opportunity to leverage your brand and portray your organization and its leadership in a positive light. It’s also an opportunity to underscore your core messaging, this is messaging you would like to bring focus to. An effective media spokesperson can steer the conversation back to this key messaging, no matter what questions a reporter throws at them. 

A smart media spokesperson also knows they have permission to buy time and collect their thoughts if necessary. One of the greatest sources of anxiety is that a reporter is going to corner or cross-examine you. Give yourself permission to get off the phone and develop a cogent response.

It’s also important to understand what kind of media coverage is attainable. Those with media-savvy know which topics various news outlets like to cover and which stories work best on different media platforms. It also helps to know how media organizations work: who is in charge and whom to contact.

TV and newspaper reporters work against deadlines, so timely responses are often necessary in order to land the coverage. 

Thoma Thoma has been helping brands shape their media presence for the past three decades. We train clients to respond in a positive and credible manner to any media inquiry. Our Media Coach Workshop™ is built on a depth of expertise in managing client reputation, image and crisis situations. 

The Media Coach Workshop™ presents a simple and effective format for responding to media requests and initiating media contact. The workshop clearly identifies the “dos and don’ts” of good media relations and prepares participants to handle the media effectively in both crisis and routine situations. 

Thoma has worked with clients across the region, teaching individuals how to prepare for various interviews, how to handle difficult questions and how to get the most important points across during the interview. 

After participating in the Media Coaching Workshop™, our clients have much more confidence working with the media. Teaching, handouts and role-playing exercises expose participants to real-life media situations, providing the tools and confidence for them to encounter the media calmly, confidently and successfully in the future. 

Our clients have often commented on the ease with which an interview is conducted after having been prepped by The Media Coach. 

Contact us if you’re interested in learning more.

You might also be interested in our blog on magnifying your message and getting the most out of media relations.  

Author Thoma Thoma

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