How To: Handle The Media

Speaking to the media is one of the most counterintuitive things you will ever do. While authenticity is supremely important in the age of Wikileaks, just being yourself is not enough.

Believe that the facts alone do not speak for themselves.

It is not the objective facts that create people’s viewpoints, but how they are presented.

Relate to what’s on the audience’s mind and how people think.

A media interview is less about a conversation with a reporter and more about talking to the viewer.

Think before you speak. You must always have a point.

Stay on Message.

Think of your appearance as a platform to express your main messages coherently not just to answer questions.

Remember that once you have said something it is out there.

No amount of clarifications and explanation will remove it.

Prepare for all questions – particularly the hard ones.

Cultivate the press and charm the audience.

Know the needs of both of these audiences. Package your information so that it is media-friendly and helps them “feed the beast” with stories which are newsworthy, containing detail and colour.

Pre-empt sensitive situations if you can.

You can then define the issue and have opposition on the defensive.

Think before you act but in the end always act.

You have less than a few hours to respond or Twitter will do it for you.  In sensitive situations always respond – otherwise you are causing damage.

Be accessible. Treat every media enquiry as if it were critical.

Don’t dismiss minor league players as unimportant

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