The need for media training, presentation skills, and more

Some of our key managers are reluctant to go through media training. How can they be persuaded to do so?

Some of our key managers are reluctant to go through media training. How can they be persuaded to do so?

Media training

Key managers are more likely to consider media training when they understand the necessity and value of it in today's world, says Rich Masters of Qorvis Communications. "It is important that key managers understand the changing landscape of media and why the value of media and presentation skills continues to grow," he says.

Masters notes that news interviews are no longer limited to politicians, CEOs, and journalists, so key leaders must be prepared for them. In fact, he adds, they should pursue and take advantage of these opportunities for the success of their business.

"No matter how well you do your job internally, if you cannot communicate your company's or organization's message clearly and effectively to the public, your expertise and credibility will be questioned," Masters says.

Presentations

Should we make presentation skills training available only to our senior managers or to managers across all levels?

The simple answer is anyone who does presentations - even to internal audiences - will perform better if trained, says Peter Pollak of Empire Information Services. The question is whether the same training program fits all. The answer is probably not. Making a presentation to a small group involves different logistics from doing a multimedia presentation in front of a large audience or standing up in front of the media at a press conference.

"I'd start with an assessment of all managers," says Pollak. "Find out what kinds of presentations they are doing now and what could help them be more comfortable." Also ask if there are certain presentation situations they are avoiding and, if so, why. Then match the vendor you bring in to the needs of the group they will train in terms of their experience and their expertise.

Media placement

How can I make sure that my media placement campaign produces the desired effect?

Start by determining what your desired effect is, says Brian Taylor of US Newswire. You have to decide if you are trying to simply get media coverage or if you are trying to reach a target demographic. If you are trying to reach a particular audience, pick a medium that will reach the largest number of people in that group.

Once you determine your target, make sure you have a clear message. "Are you trying to get people to do something (vote, stop smoking, donate to charity, etc.)? Or to help pass/oppose legislation? Or is it to get people to buy a product or service?" asks Taylor. Once you define the desired effect, then you can work more intelligently to achieve it.

Radio

What criteria should I use to select a service provider to produce and distribute our radio content?

When looking for a radio services firm, choose a company that has the most up-to-date station and network contact information for the most effective pitching and placement, says Lynn Harris Medcalf of News Generation. Instead of using a directory that is typically outdated as soon as it hits the printing press, it's important for a firm to have the latest information at their fingertips.

Look for a firm that has carved strong relationships with stations and networks through pitching quality stories. "Access to these reporters is key," Medcalf adds, "including knowing what time to pitch them, the best way to contact them, their e-mail addresses, and direct numbers. This allows them to get stories out as quickly as possible."


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