Spokesperson and media relations person not always the sameEnsure the designated spokesperson is involved in framing the message; thorough understanding of organization, message and objective of story
Keep it simpleMessage should support core values & mission statement of organization
Know media deadlines and send press releases or media advisory accordingly. Don’t send out late in the afternoon if you want evening coverage.Press release – try to include: who, what, where, when, why, and how; quote from organization’s leader and/or program beneficiary; background history; provide photos if neededFollow up with calls to assignment editor/reporter to sell the storyOffer to set up interviews; the more you do, the more likely media will cover storyOffer “live shot” opportunities when appropriateAssociated Press coverage is key; picked up by other pubs
Highlight a person who benefits from your program; how has the program improved their lifeUse their introduction as a way to bridge to the program’s purpose & functions
Set up interviews/video in area that best captures the storyProvide photos or existing video that might add to the story
Anticipate questions – practice ahead of time when possiblePlay devil’s advocate and put yourself in reporter’s shoes – what questions would you ask?Google yourself/your organization – the information found there will likely frame the reporter’s view of you
Know what you want to say, how to say it and say itDon’t be afraid to pause or ask to re-phrase answer – reporters want clear quotes/concise sound bites
Watch/read/listen to story critically – was it accurate? How did you perform?Don’t hesitate to contact reporter afterwards. Most like feedback (good or bad)
Keep in contact with reporters so they remember who you are. More likely to cover stories if you have built a relationship with them.
1. HOW TO MAKE HEADLINES
Media relations 101
2. FIND A “HOOK”
Define your goals
3. Know your audience
Who are you trying to reach?