Archive for October, 2013

The Media Will Get The Message If You Communicate Carefully

October 13, 2013

Whenever someone talks with the media they want to put their best foot forward.
To do this requires forethought and a commitment to getting their message across.
Speaking to the media is not an art but rather should always be a well crafted message
Here are some tips on making the media work for your company.
Reduce/eliminate the legalese. Rather utilize bulleted talking points along with a few important buzzwords and the interview/conversation will go smoothly. Keep responses short and illustrate with an example.
Don’t use industry acronyms, if you do spell them out for the reporter. He or she won’t want to admit their ignorance of the terms.
Stay on point: If you go off point, bridge back to topic. If the conversation starts to go off topic. Do not repeat the off-topic question verbatim, just summarize it and move back on point.
Prepare for the worst-case scenario. Have contingency plans, a rehearsed response such as “well, it’s been really great speaking with you, but I’ve got say good bye” to end an uncomfortable interview.
Finally, avoid saying unnecessary filler words like “uh” and “like.” For instance: as in the sentence “Uh, I am not sure, like I really want to do this but I don’t know how.”
Do not sound uneducated, keep these words out of your dialogue:
 Actually
 Honestly (as in “Honestly, what I think you need to do)
 I mean
 Like
 Ta (a mangled variation of “to”)
 Uh
 Um
 You Know
However, do remember that no one knows your product or business better than you. You are the authority so don’t be afraid to tell the media about it.
The last word I’d like to bring to your attention is “but”. While grammatically it is acceptable; it’s ripe with nuance. Try replacing “but” with “and” to come across kinder and less contrary.