Chapter 11 Notes

I really liked the tips given on page 283, on how to handle interviews with print or broadcast personnel.

  • Listed below are a few of the tips that I liked most or that I found more helpful:
    • Determine, in advance, what key points or message you want to convey on behalf of the organization or client.
    • Anticipate questions and plan answers. Be totally familiar with facts, figures, and details that will help you sound credible.
    • Don’t tell half-truths. Don’t exaggerate.
    • Don’t let reporters put words in your mouth.
    • Be quotable. Say it briefly, clearly, and directly in 30 seconds or less.
    • Never say “NO COMMENT”
    • There is no such thing as “OFF THE RECORD”
    • Don’t speak ill about the competition or other individuals.
    • Watch your attitude. Don’t be arrogant, evasive, or uncooperative.
    • If a question is unfair or too personal, say so and refuse to answer.

I also found the section about news conferences to be very interesting and helpful. There are a lot of key points in the reading. Below, I have broken it down and pulled out points that I thought were most important.

  • Scheduling a News Conference
    • In general, Tuesday, Wednesday, or Thursday mornings are best for dailies and broadcast media. Allows sufficient time for reporters to get stories in the next morning’s daily or on the 6 p.m. news.
    • Avoid Saturday and Sundays, as well as major holidays.
    • Try to schedule the news conference on a day when there are not other major announcements or news events.
    • Selecting a location (must meet several criteria)
      • Convenient for the media invited and be relatively close to their place of work.
      • Room selected must have the necessary facilities to accommodate both print and broadcast media.
      • Room must have plenty of electrical outlets. In some cases television people may want ground floor near an entrance, they may want to run cables from the truck to the room for live broadcasting.
      • Radio reporters will want a room with phone jacks.
      • Make room available 1 or 2 hours in advance so that radio and television crews can set up.
      • Have general seating arrangements.
      • More great tips can be found under the invitation, handling the conference, and after the conference section.
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