Oh no, a JOURNALIST has my number!!

Ever taken a phone call from a journalist and didn’t know what to do…apart from panic that is? With good planning, practice and the support of a PR professional, managing media doesn’t have to be a scary event that leaves you in the corner rocking back and forth.

Confession time…hands up anyone that has ever said something you wish you could take back, say differently, just erased from ever passing your lips?

 

Yeah, thought so.  What would you do if those comments were in the public realm and a journalist phoned and asked for a comment?

 

Would you say or do any of the following?

PANIC – Why are they picking on me, surely there is a more newsworthy story out there…anywhere.  I want my mummy.

IGNORE THE CALL – No comment…no comment…no comment…no comment. Laa laaa said with fingers in your ears!

DOB IN A MATE – oh no you need to talk with Joe, he was there and knows all about it. Quickly pass on all Joe’s personal contact details.

SPILL THE BEANS – tell them everything you know and even what you’re not sure of.

PORKIES – Nup, not me, don’t know what you’re talking about, we have nothing to do with it.

SUNSHINE & LOLLIPOPS – Wish it all away.

 

Unfortunately, the team at Mara has witnessed all the above and it’s much harder to restore trust and reputations once you’ve had an interaction with the media like this.

In today’s instant media environment, everyone is a commentator, everyone can post a news story and every post has the potential to go viral.  And there is a platform for every type of media imaginable – Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Blogger, Flickr, foursquare, YouTube, vimeo, reddit, google+, Instagram, and it goes on… Let alone the traditional media like radio, newspapers, television.  Journalists are in the business of selling news and manage it poorly, you’ll be the story!

With good planning, practice and the support of a PR professional, managing media doesn’t have to be a scary event that leaves you in the corner rocking back and forth.  Basically, communication, whether it is in a crisis or if it is to engage with stakeholders, protect your brand’s reputation, increase promotional opportunities, should always be planned.

These five steps will get you on your way:

  1. Undertake a communication audit and situation analysis.
  2. Set communication goals and objectives.
  3. Plan – who, what, why, how, when to communicate.
  4. Implement your communication plan.
  5. Review and update the plan.

In Mara’s next blog instalment, we’ll take a closer look at a completing a self-audit communication checklist.

For more information, or professional public relations advice, contact Mara Consulting for assistance.