How to Attract Positive Media
  for your School District




    BRAD DOMITROVICH
       Bandera Independent School Distri...
The Challenge
• School districts face many challenges.
• The job of an effective school board is even
  more difficult when...
Importance
      of Communications
• Gets your message out to parents,
  community, and employees.
• Allows you to clarify...
Public Relations
Public Relations
plays an important
role in creating a
positive buzz about
your school district
with ever...
Who are your stakeholders?

            • Students
            • Parents
            • Taxpayers
            • Employees
What makes the news?
• Something controversial.
• Something that is timely.
• Something that involves a lot of people.
• S...
Believe it or not ...
Members of the media
• Are very competitive.
• Not always out to get you.
• Can get the “truth” from...
What does the media do?
• Influence concern about key issues.
• Increase public awareness.
• Increase public knowledge.
• H...
What do schools want?
•   Keep community
    confidence level high.
•   Avoid negative publicity.
•   Deliver a positive
  ...
What does the media want?
          •   An exclusive story.
          •   An interview with key
              individuals ...
Is it possible to build a
 relationship with the media?
• The best time to build a relationship is
  when their is no majo...
Important things to do ...
•   Don’t treat the media as if
    they were the enemy.
•   Be cooperative.
•   Respond in a t...
School district news ...
•   Poor test results   •   Great test results
•   A divided school    •   A school board
    boa...
Interviewing Tip #1
If you are not the
spokesperson for
the district, politely
tell the reporter you
will have someone
ret...
Preparing for an interview ...
            • Know the facts.
            • Anticipate questions.
            • Set the gro...
Responding to the media
• Communicate first with your heart.
• Your first words create an image.
• How are you perceived?
• ...
Guidelines to remember
• Keep the energy up.
• Remember your
  audience.
• Remember your message.
• Create a sound bite.
•...
One last interviewing tip ...


             There is no
             such thing as
             off the record.
Interpersonal Communications

• Chamber of Commerce
• Ministerial Alliances
• Convention/Visitors Bureau
• Campus PTO Meet...
Media and News Releases
• Simple, factual, and innovative.
• Timeliness and connection to major
  issues/controversies.
• ...
• Primary marketing
Website       tool.
Marketing   • Evolving website -
              nothing worse than
              a ...
Electronic Communications
• Fast, timely, cost effective.
• Build your database through parent
  sign-ups, on-line forms, ...
Social Media




 Social Media is empowering
parents, students and schools.
Schools and Social Media
• Social media is more than social
  networking sites.
• Some examples:
  ★ Blogs, Onlineforums, ...
Schools and Social Media

• Communities are using social media to:
  ★ See what other parents are saying about their
    s...
Importance of Communications
       (one more time)
• Gets your message out to parents,
  community, and employees.
• Allo...
Public Relations (one more time)
Public Relations
plays an important
role in creating a
positive buzz about
your school di...
Questions?




Please call or e-mail me.
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How To Attract Positive Media

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Presented to TASA/TASB Convention October 2, 2009 in Houston.

Presented to TASB Summer Leadership Institute June 13, 2009 in San Antonio and June 20, 2009 in Ft. Worth.

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How To Attract Positive Media

  1. 1. How to Attract Positive Media for your School District BRAD DOMITROVICH Bandera Independent School District Texas School Public Relations Association
  2. 2. The Challenge • School districts face many challenges. • The job of an effective school board is even more difficult when faced with issues that divide your community. • Bonds, boundary changes, school closings, standardized dress codes, curriculum, school finance, football, cheerleaders, etc.
  3. 3. Importance of Communications • Gets your message out to parents, community, and employees. • Allows you to clarify your goals and objectives. • Provides a vehicle to dispel rumors.
  4. 4. Public Relations Public Relations plays an important role in creating a positive buzz about your school district with every one of your stakeholders.
  5. 5. Who are your stakeholders? • Students • Parents • Taxpayers • Employees
  6. 6. What makes the news? • Something controversial. • Something that is timely. • Something that involves a lot of people. • Something that’s important for the public to know. • Something that is a first.
  7. 7. Believe it or not ... Members of the media • Are very competitive. • Not always out to get you. • Can get the “truth” from somebody else. • Are human beings.
  8. 8. What does the media do? • Influence concern about key issues. • Increase public awareness. • Increase public knowledge. • Help the community form an opinion. • Make school districts accountable for their actions or decisions.
  9. 9. What do schools want? • Keep community confidence level high. • Avoid negative publicity. • Deliver a positive message. • Make their district stand out from the rest.
  10. 10. What does the media want? • An exclusive story. • An interview with key individuals - not always the schlep. • Something controversial because it sells! • To be helpful.
  11. 11. Is it possible to build a relationship with the media? • The best time to build a relationship is when their is no major story brewing. • Stay current with names and contacts. • Be proactive - don’t wait for bad news to begin developing relationships with the media.
  12. 12. Important things to do ... • Don’t treat the media as if they were the enemy. • Be cooperative. • Respond in a timely manner. • It’s OK to tell them if they misquoted you in the past or misrepresented you.
  13. 13. School district news ... • Poor test results • Great test results • A divided school • A school board board working together • Poor financial • Excellent financial management management • Lousy facilities • Great facilities • Teacher doing • Teacher doing something wrong something right
  14. 14. Interviewing Tip #1 If you are not the spokesperson for the district, politely tell the reporter you will have someone return their call.
  15. 15. Preparing for an interview ... • Know the facts. • Anticipate questions. • Set the ground rules. • Rehearse your message. • Anticipate contrary points of view. • Avoid personal opinions.
  16. 16. Responding to the media • Communicate first with your heart. • Your first words create an image. • How are you perceived? • Listen with your face. • It’s all about the kids. • Keep your message simple.
  17. 17. Guidelines to remember • Keep the energy up. • Remember your audience. • Remember your message. • Create a sound bite. • Always restate your message. • Never say “no comment”.
  18. 18. One last interviewing tip ... There is no such thing as off the record.
  19. 19. Interpersonal Communications • Chamber of Commerce • Ministerial Alliances • Convention/Visitors Bureau • Campus PTO Meetings • Advisory Meetings • Exhibits/Shows
  20. 20. Media and News Releases • Simple, factual, and innovative. • Timeliness and connection to major issues/controversies. • Get your side out first. • Factual, simple when it comes to Board Meeting recaps.
  21. 21. • Primary marketing Website tool. Marketing • Evolving website - nothing worse than a static site. • Train your audience to go there. • Promote your website always.
  22. 22. Electronic Communications • Fast, timely, cost effective. • Build your database through parent sign-ups, on-line forms, etc. • Some examples: ★ Electronic Newsletters, Updates, Board Briefings, Emergency News, etc.
  23. 23. Social Media Social Media is empowering parents, students and schools.
  24. 24. Schools and Social Media • Social media is more than social networking sites. • Some examples: ★ Blogs, Onlineforums, Podcasts, Really Simple Syndication (RSS), Network Services,Wikis, Twitter, and more.
  25. 25. Schools and Social Media • Communities are using social media to: ★ See what other parents are saying about their school and its staff. ★ Get support and insight into educational and parenting issues. ★ Build awareness about an issue or cause.
  26. 26. Importance of Communications (one more time) • Gets your message out to parents, community, and employees. • Allows you to clarify your goals and objectives. • Provides a vehicle to dispel rumors.
  27. 27. Public Relations (one more time) Public Relations plays an important role in creating a positive buzz about your school district with every one of your stakeholders.
  28. 28. Questions? Please call or e-mail me.

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