How To Communicate With The Media For Better Results: 10 Expert Tips
Interacting with the media in the right way can help raise the profile of the company and its products.
Aside from advertising, one of the most effective ways to build consumer confidence in a brand is to get positive media coverage on it. Buyers enjoy learning about products in a space that they look to for news and reviews. As a result, interacting with the media in the right way can help raise the profile of the company and its products.
However, with the sheer number of outlets and audiences to cover, it can be difficult for a new brand to figure out how to best engage and communicate with the press in order to yield the desired results. Below, 10 contributors to Forbes Communications Council share their best methods of communicating with the media and explain why these techniques actually work.
- Over The Phone Or In Real Life
I’ve found that the best way to strengthen your relationship with the media and ensure that all of your messages are received with the proper context is to pick up the phone or schedule a time to meet in real life. It’s infinitely more personal than a DM, leaves nothing to be assumed and helps maintain your ability to shape the story. - Ken Gibbs, Viacom
- Verbal Interactive Communication
I prefer to connect with people by phone or in person because it’s easier to have authentic interactions. Information often gets misinterpreted in texts and emails, especially tone of voice. With tools like FaceTime and video chats, technology makes it simple to connect in meaningful ways. I believe in “humanizing business” to gain trust and credibility, which are critical when talking to the media. - Stacy Sherman, Schindler Elevator Corporation
- Press Releases
Writing and issuing press releases is a lost art. Press releases let you make important announcements to various media outlets all at the same time. A well-crafted press release allows you to control the narrative around a new development in your business and get the word out quickly to a network of media contacts. Be sure to proofread it before you send it, as typos can hurt your credibility. Use online tools like www.rephraser.ai to ensure your writing is fluent, concise, error-free and uses the optimal language for the context. - Amine Rahal, Regal Assets
- Direct Email
Everyone loves a good face-to-face, but having a direct email relationship with the media is the best method. Journalists today must move and respond so fast, so it’s actually better if they receive a clear email from you with supporting links and not have to depend on notes they take during a conversation. It improves their ability to get stories out and your ability to convey accurate information. - Jennifer Kyriakakis, MATRIXX Software
- Press Conferences And Media Events
If a company is launching a new product or has critical information to share, hosting a press conference (either independently or around a major industry event) can be an efficient way to target multiple media outlets at once. This also creates a pretext for a more personal follow-up post-event with individual media contacts where you can share more targeted messaging with your PR collateral. - Gerard Escaler, Lyrium Venture Partners Limited
LinkedIn is a good way to communicate with the media because it is easy for the media to see your track record and remember why they should engage with you. It also offers an opportunity for the media to see your thought leadership and impact on your industry. The great thing about LinkedIn is that it also extends to email and mobile as media will receive email and mobile notifications from your message. - Brian Lee, Unleash Your Identity
Start by following those journalists or freelance writers who are authoritative and relevant to your target market. They appreciate the follows, may connect with you in turn, and you now have DM (direct message) access to them to test their interest in a story, in a medium they are already living in every hour of every day. - Mark Floisand, Coveo
- Networking Events And PR Groups
When communicating with the media, it’s important to establish a personal connection early on. Check out networking events where media are attending, join a professional media or PR group, or head to a local establishment where reporters and journalists are known to hang out. By making an in-person connection with the media, they will more likely remember you for future quotes or story topics. - Maura Kennedy, Pond Lehocky, LLP
- Quotable New Research
Everyone wants to see the newest, original research on a topic they cover. So create new, quality research that is quotable, with an executive summary, infographics, listicles, images, sources and preferably a unique insight, prediction or twist that makes for a great headline or pull-quote. Sometimes the more contrarian the better. Rehashing old news in a new way is not all that new. - Duane Sprague, Trust Brands
- The Artful Brief
When preparing for an interview, briefing is both science and an art. I review recent publications by the journalist/representative and if I have time, do a quick search on social platforms. This is enough for me to understand how I might position my story for this journalist or outlet. With information like this, I can better shape a compelling narrative. - Mark Sparvell, Microsoft
Adapted from an article written by Forbes Communications Council first published on https://www.forbes.com/ April 1, 2020