Anyone who has to represent an organization, a business, or anyone who has to reach the public must be able to interact with the media effectively. Being self-assured in front of the microphone and cameras, with all lights flashing, is something that can be learned with proper media training. It may be a quick press release, an interview in a TV studio, or even a full radio debate — whatever it is, most individuals become anxious when they are required to make a public remark.

There aren’t many people who have a natural gift for speaking in front of a crowd. The good news is that this is a talent that can be readily acquired, and with sufficient practice, anyone can deliver a wonderful speech regardless of the scenario.

While the media environment is continuously evolving and moving, media training remains as crucial as it has always been, since communicators must still focus on getting a message out, whether to the public or to journalists.


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Develop key messages

Most of the time, when someone speaks in front of the public, they don’t have a lot of time to get their main point through. In reality, most studies have found that after a few minutes of listening to a lecture, the general population loses interest. This is why it is critical to communicate the main point succinctly and effectively.

The most crucial thing that the audience needs to hear and comprehend about the organization or business is the core message. This is at the heart of the business and what connects the audience with the organization, thus it must be articulated clearly at the outset.

Prepare for the interview

Aside from understanding the primary message that the spokesperson must communicate, this individual must also be trained to comprehend the various sorts of reporters and journalists. Although there are interviewers that are quite adept at eliciting the proper information from the individual being interviewed, the spokesperson must be able to grasp who they are speaking to.

Being adequately prepared also means that the spokesperson will not appear robotic in front of the cameras. The audience will not be captivated by a few key points that the speaker has nearly memorized and is continually reciting.

Taking control

Media training entails more than just learning what the messages are and how to effectively deliver them. There are instances when a journalist or a reporter may ask a question that the spokesperson is not prepared to answer – whether owing to an oversight, or even as simple as the subject being altogether different.

However, with the correct media training, the spokesperson will be able to gracefully reword any irrelevant or uncomfortable question while transitioning to a far better response. This can be accomplished by the use of a short transitional phrase, respectfully rephrasing what has previously been conveyed, or just patiently repeating the important information once again.

Public relations specialists should be media experts, but their clients may not be there yet, and it is up to them to assist them get there. Many studies have indicated that one of the most common concerns of people is public speaking. As a result, it should come as no surprise that many business executives, especially those in large corporations, experience anxiety while speaking in front of a group of people. When you are the leader, though, you cannot hide and delegate all responsibility to someone else. Leaders must lead, even when dealing with the media and speaking in public.

Practicing Questions

Of course, training is required, but as with practically anything, we improve as we practice doing it correctly… However, incorrect practice will not result in improvement. As a result, placing the student in front of people who will ask them random questions should be a key element of media training. Allow them to respond completely. Then come to a halt and listen to what the group has to say about alternative approaches, including terrible ones. When both the advantages and negatives are available for consideration, it is simpler to discover what should happen.

Time to get ready

Prepare for any interview or media presentation by learning everything you can about the issue, your organization, and any current events that may be related to your business. It is far more effective than floundering when you know the answers. But don’t forget to use the useful little phrase. “I can’t think of an accurate response off the top of my head.” Will you please leave your contact information with my assistant, and I will get back to you?” Then you must keep your pledge as soon as possible.

Take a fact sheet with you to any media interview that has thorough information; this is especially useful if the interview is on a specific circumstance or topic.

If you’re addressing a group, stand; if you’re having a one-on-one conversation, sit.

Dress professionally if you are going to be videotaped. For radio, podcast, or print interviews, you may be a little more comfortable in your attire, but you still want to seem professional, so if they are filming, a suit jacket and button-up shirt or a great turtleneck would work nicely.

Convey a list of “sound bites” that you may utilize to make your arguments. There’s no need to utilize them all, but having five provides you the option of which ones to use throughout every interview.

Determine the duration of the interview so that you can cover the most significant elements in the time allotted. Always have more than enough to discuss, but be sure to get to the major stuff before your time runs out.

After the media interview

When it’s finished, it’s time to go over it. What might have been done better, and what would you do differently the next time? If it was recorded, see if you can acquire a copy to see how you came across to the camera. Anything else that you can think of that could be improved for the next time. This is how you become an expert in media interviews.

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