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Everything You Need to Know About Media Relations (Part 2)

Everything You Need to Know About Media Relations (Part 2)
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In the previous article, we’ve learned that similar to public relations, media relations work on building a rapport with these professional journalists or media outlets in order to communicate an organization’s goals, ideas, intent and newsworthy events.

However, dealing with the media presents unique challenges and thus has to be handled with professionalism and following a strict code of ethics.

Choosing a Media Team for Your Organization

Choosing a Media Team for Your Organization

Years ago, organizations were still debating if they really needed a media team. However, today it is a must-have.

As you build your media team, it is important to do so with as much commitment and care you would have taken to hire a marketing team. Don’t consider it as a mere side-project.

So, a good media should always consist of:

  • A media coordinator is someone who is personable, can succinctly articulate the issues. This individual makes sure press releases go out on time, keeps media lists updated, makes press calls, and works actively behind the scenes during events. The media coordinator is well-known behind the camera as the organization’s spokesperson is in front of it. One person handling press calls can refine important relationships with assignment desk personnel, news producers, and camera people.


  • The writer creates the substance for all the press events. They must have a clear, concise, effective writing skills. It is also a must for them to be a good editor and always ensure that they “tighten up” news material. They must have a good understanding of the organization because everything that is written and released must accurately reflect the position of the organization.


  • The spokesperson must be a good listener, have a camera presence, be well-informed about issues, be able to think quickly, have credibility, be able to develop a good rapport with reporters and be intuitive enough to know when a reporter is not friendly. He / She must be able to think through each question that is likely to be asked, and consider the possible responses carefully and always be ready to revise and refine the organization’s position as defined by the media environment.


How Media Works?



  • Access to spokespeople for detailed interviews
  • Allows for greater explanation
  • Work against varying deadlines



  • More in-depth interviews
  • Angle relevance to readers
  • Longer deadlines




  • Completely driven by visuals and sound bites
  • Varying formats
  • Emotional hooks, personal relevance
  • Work against hard deadlines for scheduled programs



  • Reliant on sound bites and audio
  • Varying formats
  • Work against hard deadlines for scheduled programs



  • Varying formats and focus
  • Utilize print, visual and audio elements
  • Optimum flexibility
  • Allows interactive dialogue
  • Anyone can be a reporter
  • Huge opportunities, huge risk


Media Deadlines and Understanding Media Lead Times

All reporters write stories on a deadline … could be days or minutes!

  • Daily newspapers (4-5 p.m. night before)
  • Weekly newspapers (2-3 days to a week before)
  • Television (same day to two weeks)
  • Radio (same day to two weeks)
  • Online (immediate)


Basic Rules for Building Good Media Relations Include:

Basic Rules for Building Good Media Relations Include:

  1. Shoot squarely—“honesty is the best policy;”
  2. Respecting media deadlines and by being available to the media;
  3. Do not beg or whine, especially by asking for special treatment;
  4. Do not ask media to kill a story; and
  5. Do not flood the media with information that does not have news value.


Do’s and Don’ts of Media Relations:


  1. Treat this as a business relationship
  2. Rehearse
  3. Remember to use key messages
  4. Speak in sound-bites
  5. Be memorable
  6. Know that the media will talk to your competitors
  7. Respect deadlines
  8. Provide detail



  1. Keep talking to fill the silence
  2. Speculate
  3. Talk too fast
  4. Forget: Everything you say can and will be used in print
  5. Bad mouth anyone


Again, share your comments about what you think about media relations.


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