If you want to position your company as a thought leader in your target market, it’s a good idea to reach out to the media and let them know you are open for commentary and are willing to speak in public about issues at hand. To do this effectively and portray your company in the best light, it’s a good idea to go through some basic media training and learn how best to deal with reporters and their questions. Here are six reasons why knowing some basics will prove valuable to your image.
Adapt to Local Customs
If you have already interacted with media representatives and are familiar with how they ask questions and dig for details, you probably know how to act during an interview or a press conference. If you move to a new country however, some things might be drastically different. What was considered polite or funny in your home or former place of residence, might be seen as rude or even offensive somewhere else. Therefore, it’s a good reason to go through some basic media training with a local professional who can get you up to speed on all dos and don’ts you might not be familiar with. That way you can confidently approach your next public appearance and represent yourself and your company in a good light.
Grab Your Audience’s Attention
Media training can be a great way to learn how to use your body language and tone of voice in a way that captivates your listeners and makes them connect with you. Many people are scared of being interviewed, especially on camera, and that can easily be seen in the recording. That’s sad because a TV interview is a great way to reach an audience and communicate with them very directly and personally. It’s your chance to give your company a face and a personality in public and make a business more relatable. Letting a coach teach you the basics of how to speak and carry yourself when on camera can help you get the attention you need for the message you want to share. After all, studies have shown that body language is considerably more important than what you say.
Convey Your Message Successfully
For every interview, you should prepare a short list of key messages you want to get across. Going through media training can help you do this in an effective and make it easier to get your audience’s attention and retain it. Learning how to address their needs and desires in your key messages will give you an additional edge. A good trainer will also teach you how to package your messages and bring them into as many responses as possible. That way you repeat your main ideas and ensure that they stick in people’s minds.
Be Prepared for Difficult Questions
If your company or industry is involved in some sort of controversy or deals with sensitive subjects you can expect to be asked some hard questions. The good thing is that you or your PR team can often guess which questions will be asked and therefore prepare an outline for an answer. This will help you avoid long thinking breaks or blurting out something you later wish you could take back. Having an experienced professional assist you with the responses to hard questions can go a long way, especially when dealing with topics that could easily lead to negative press or even legal implications.
Get Quoted Properly
If you know how to answer media questions properly, you are more likely to get quoted correctly too. There is hardly anything more upsetting than seeing a large feature piece about your company with a quote from you that doesn’t reflect any of your carefully prepared key messages. To avoid this, learn how to answer questions in a way that makes it easy for the media to take notes and formulate a quote that includes your main message.