Five Reasons Media Training Is Crucial For Any Leader
By Evan Nierman, founder and CEO of Red Banyan, an international crisis communications firm. Credit: Forbes.com
Telling a story or answering questions while the cameras roll can be a tall order for someone who has no previous media experience.
It is easy to lose your train of thought or become intimidated when you are answering questions from reporters. Media spokesperson training can give you the confidence, knowledge and on-camera skills needed to get you through even the most stressful situations.
On-camera spokesperson training will teach you how to think on your feet, help you prepare ahead of time, coach you through mock interviews and help you figure out what type of questions might come up during interviews.
PR training and media relations knowledge can come in handy when a company finds itself in the midst of an unexpected crisis or has major news to share.
1. Speaking Effectively Before Cameras
If you have never spoken before a live camera, it can be a little intimidating. Do you know what to wear and what you are going to say? Preparation is the key to success. Media training will provide you with suggestions on how to answer questions, what expressions to avoid and what not to say. It will also teach you how to stick to your script so you can steer the narrative in the direction you want it to go — and how to get it back on track if it goes off the rails.
Learning how to frame core messages, and how to share your stories in ways that captivate and make a difference, are important to keeping the audience engaged and your messaging on track.
Knowing what you are going to say and how you will handle the tough questions is the best way to approach an on-camera interview with confidence. Understanding how to shape the narrative in a light that is favorable to you is also key to getting your message across in the way that you desire.
2. Interview Preparation
Prepare, prepare, prepare. That’s the key to acing an on-camera interview. Media relations experts can help you come up with talking points and potential interview questions so you are ready for anything when the pressure is on.
A proactive PR expert understands the value of interview preparation and will make sure you are ready with talking points and also prepared to answer any zingers that may come your way. Always expect the unexpected. If you know how you will address the most difficult questions ahead of time, you will do well during a live media event. Always be truthful and be willing to admit you need to do research if you do not have an answer on hand.
PR professionals with a background in interview preparation can provide you with guidelines that will help you select the most qualified individual to serve as your organization’s spokesperson. Choosing someone who can think on their feet and is comfortable with public speaking and confident fielding questions is essential when selecting a spokesperson.
Whether your organization needs to share information regarding a news event, has an internal story to tell or is trying to publicize a new product or service, spokesperson training can be helpful in getting your message out.
3. Improved Storytelling
Storytelling is a key component of public relations because it enables businesses to better connect with their audience, stir empathy and create connections with customers that would otherwise not exist.
Using a single spokesperson as a point person is a good way to control and oversee outgoing information and ensure its accuracy.
4. Added Confidence
Do you know what makes a good story and what it takes to get that story out? With PR skills, you can more easily recognize the elements of a good story and can craft compelling pitches that capture interest and bring results. This training will come in handy in a crisis and when you are under media scrutiny; it will help you know what to expect. It will also teach you how stay focused on the narrative you want to convey.
5. Shaping The Narrative
Knowing how to frame your story and provide the media with information and details that back up your claims is key. With good training, you’ll be able to steer the narrative in the desired direction. Media spokespersons should be able to think on their feet, provide quotes and be unafraid to face a camera. PR experts should be able to help you choose the best spokesperson possible so you can take control of your story and tell it the way you want it told.