Are You Ready To Talk To The Media?
Overcome Your Fears Fast!
A media member from your local newspaper calls you right now for an interview.
Do you freeze up with anxiety or relish the opportunity to get some free publicity?
If you are a bit nervous talking to the press, you are not alone. Many small-business owners fear that they will say the wrong thing… or aren’t sure what to say at all.
However, if you don’t communicate with the media, and your competition does, guess who is going to get a big advantage and credibility boost in front of your targeted customer base?
One Media Story Is All It Takes.
If you don’t like to talk to reporters or spend time communicating with them, you may want to rethink your position. After all, one small story in your local newspaper can give you third-party credibility you simply can’t obtain through advertising… along with new sales.
This communication doesn’t cost any money, but it can provide unique benefits. Specifically, people who see the story may share it with friends and family members and contact you for more information about your products and services (over the competition).
And the good news is, it’s not hard to get the training you need to overcome your fears and reap the benefits of a good story in the press!
Where Do You Start?
1. Schedule time to learn.
We are all busy. Add the media training process to your calendar now. If you only have 30 minutes a day, a week, or a month, write it down. This way, it will become a priority… no matter how much time you spend on it. Just remember, the more priority you give to your media training, the better the results you will receive.
2. Review your thought process.
Now is the time to really think about why you don’t like to talk to the media and ask yourself a few questions:
Have you heard that reporters will always misquote you?
Do you just think it’s a waste of time?
Are you an introvert who doesn’t really like to talk to others unless you need to?
Seriously review the key factors stopping you from using the “power of the press” to build awareness in front of your target market.
Once you answer these questions, you’ll have a better understanding of what you need to do to move forward. More than likely, it’s just a matter of learning how this process works and how to prepare accordingly.
First, write down the messages you want to promote.
Why are you unique?
What is your expertise and background?
What kind of benefits do you offer that your target market will be interested in hearing about?
Make a list of talking points that are interesting and that you want to share.
Next, study the local media.
Talking to media members is just like talking to anyone else. You want to provide information they will care about and discover what’s important to them.
Check out your local newspapers, radio shows, television programs, magazines, and more.
Who writes about your products and services?
Learn about each individual and think about why they would want to talk to you.
What kind of information, story ideas, local event information, and more can you provide to them?
Remember, this process is about creating a business relationship. It’s not about you boring them with all of your features and latest sales!
Once you know your message, practice what you are going to say. Have a friend or associate review questions with you. It’s important to feel comfortable responding with good answers that sound real and not just stated from a script.
It also helps to place a “cheat sheet” of talking points near your desk. This way, you’ll always be ready to talk to media members when they have tight deadlines.
If you have no idea how to move forward, look for small business PR training online or via a public relations’ expert. They can guide you through the process from DIY programs to full consulting services.
This practice can completely remove your fears of talking to the press!
Once you take these steps, and are ready to move forward, it’s time to plan. You know what you want to share so why wait for reporters to call you?
Contact targeted media members directly and share your story. You never know what can happen! You may get an interview right away, a future article or just start a valuable, long-term relationship. But you’ll never know if you don’t try.
Also, the more you communicate with the press, the more comfortable you’ll be. One day, you may wonder why you were afraid to talk to media members at all!
Now, if you train and practice thoroughly and still feel uneasy, it’s time to look for a new spokesperson in your business. Find an outgoing associate who feels comfortable talking to the media and knows how to say the right things at the right time. After all, you don’t want to make a bad impression that can actually turn into a PR nightmare!
The Media is Waiting. Are You Ready to Talk to Them?
With the right training, practice and plan, you can overcome your fears of talking to the media and generate press mentions for your business. It’s not difficult and can provide great results.
In fact, one good story in a media venue that your target market reads, watches or listens to can bring in a multitude of new customers, boost positive word-of-mouth and increase your bottom line fast.
It’s time to get past your anxiety and communicate with the media…third-party credibility and a huge, cost effective competitive advantage await!
Author Melanie Rembrandt is an award-winning writer, sought-after speaker and content strategy expert who helps entrepreneurs boost sales, awareness and credibility fast with a unique combination of targeted, SEO copywriting and public relations. For more information, tips and insights, visit Rembrandt Communications at https://www.rembrandtwrites.com.
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