Media Training by Public Relations Experts
Most executives and entrepreneurs want their companies to get media coverage and, in the process, develop strong relationship with the press. Many overlook a critical element of media relations: media training. When a company finds itself in the spotlight or makes its leaders available for media commentary, it is essential that they understand the rules of the game.
Media training involves preparation, practice, planning, and performance. Each element is an essential component of effective media relations which should be a part of every public relations and crisis communications plan.
Media training teaches entrepreneurs, business leaders and spokespersons how to:
- Speak in such a way that the audience notices and recalls the key messages
- Communicate key messages clearly, concisely and persuasively
- Participate in offensive or defensive interviews
- Manage tough questions
- Control the interview and the message
- Speak in easy-to-understand sound bites
- Appear favorably on television
- Sound confident on radio
- Identify relatable examples
- Curate memorable data
- Use metaphors and analogies effectively
- Overcome physical and verbal roadblocks to effective communications
Executives and entrepreneurs should be well prepared and media trained before the opportunity to work with the press arises. To the extent possible, companies can and should control messages provided to the media.
While media training should be part of a company’s overall public relations efforts, there are times when businesses require focused training for their executives and spokespersons. The goal of media training such leaders is to develop their full potential as corporate advocates when participating in press interviews for print, digital, radio (audio), and broadcast (video) interviews.
Furia Rubel’s media training programs help executives and entrepreneurs to:
- Recognize the impact of public opinion
- Analyze today’s popular culture
- Understand today’s media and how it operates
- Develop skills to deal successfully with members of the media
- Apply principles of message design to media interviews
- Develop confidence in dealing with all forms of media
- Recognize the advantages of working with the press as a strategy in business management
- Understand how to maintain a positive and ongoing relationship with journalists
- Prepare for the unexpected
Media Training for Businesses: Approach and Deliverables
Furia Rubel designs each corporate media relations workshop to meet the specific needs of the individuals within the organization. We work with for-profits and nonprofits alike. We take into account the number of participants and their profiles, the time constraints of your in-house marketing and public relations staff, the nature of your business, and the configuration of the available space.
Workshops are organized and conducted to maximize individual participation. The emphasis is on learning through doing, in a neutral and relaxed atmosphere. The expert media training facilitators offer some lecture and demonstration and provide an opportunity for participants to rehearse the techniques.
Half-Day Corporate Media Training Workshop
The initial half-day media training workshop is a four-hour program. It will:
- Allow participants to share their experiences
- Demystify the media relations process, venues, and formats (print, broadcast, radio, digital)
- Cover media interaction strategies, techniques, and industry lingo (i.e., off-the-record; on-the-record; on background; exclusives)
- Provide practical tips on every touchpoint of media relations
- Work with actual issues relevant to the company and its stakeholders
- Address best practices for visual appeal for in-person or photographed interviews
Executives and entrepreneurs who participate in this media training program will learn how to:
- Define communication objectives
- Identify the target audience (readers, viewers, listeners)
- Develop key messages (clear, compelling, confident, and practiced)
- Speak in sound bites or “information kernels” (clear, concise, quotable language)
- Manage body language and vocal tone (authenticity, approachability, likeability, impact)
- Handle the media (who they are, how they work, what they need, how to deliver)
- Prepare for interviews (relaxation, appearance, props, logistics, preparation)
- Bridge and deflect questions and comments
- Avoid common mistakes
- Approach media follow up (after the interview)
Ongoing Consultative Media Training Services
Ongoing media training support is available to each media training workshop participant. Furia Rubel also provides one-on-one media training for executives and entrepreneurs.
Media training consultation offerings include:
Furia Rubel Quick Prep SessionsTM: Quick Prep Sessions in advance of each interview are available for media training workshop participants. Preparation includes but is not limited to a review of all relevant information about the interview topic, an overview of the media outlet, the background of the interviewer, a review of key talking points and the messaging used to deliver these talking points.
Furia Rubel Practice and Polish SessionsTM: Practice and Polish Sessions are available to media training workshop participants to practice the fundamentals of interviewing to the point that they become second nature. Once practiced, it is critical to polish the responses so they do not appear canned. In many cases, it is necessary to stick to a prepared statement, especially when high-states matters are discussed.
Furia Rubel High Stakes Training SessionsTM: High Stakes Training Sessions focus on preparing for high-profile media interviews through videotaped role-play sessions and issues preparation when we anticipate ambush, assault, talk show and cross-examination-like interviews. Such sessions are used in crisis management and controversial issue situations and are most effective when implemented proactively.
- Allegations of corporate wrongdoing, deception or malfeasance
- Bet-the-company litigation
- Breaking news issues
- Corporate financial distress
- Cyber breach and technology issues
- Death of key executive
- Financial crisis
- Government relations
- High-profile trial publicity
- Hostile takeovers
- Industrial accidents
- Natural disasters
- Regulatory and ethics communications
- Sexual harassment accusations
- Shareholder and board relations
- Terrorist attacks
- Workplace violence
Public opinion matters. If you are looking to up your game and have more success with your media relations and crisis communications efforts, now is the time to contact Furia Rubel.