Crisis Communication Media Training Tips

December 5, 2013 9:17 am Published by

This past week with the tragic New York Commuter train derailment, annual Black Friday violence at stores like Walmart, Kohls and Toys R Us, I’ve been reminded of crisis communication training. As public relation teams focus on 2014 planning, it’s an ideal time to review a few tips that public relations practitioners should consider to prepare for potential crisis situations.

Four media training tips:

Strategize a game plan that will help your organization:

  • Maintain control by asserting the company agenda in the interviews
  • Portray confidence by being enthusiastic and an open participant in the interview
  • Demonstrate credibility with supporting information so the audience truly believes the message

Choose a spokesperson:

  •  It is important to identify one person or a team of experts who will be the public face for the company in all media interviews
  • Your spokesperson becomes the message so they need to think about how they look and sound as well as the way they need to convey the information to the audience

Prepare for media inquiries:

  • Create key message points that address key facts, thoughts and ideas your company would like the audience to remember
  • Determine your company goals for the media interviews and make sure to only provide information that support those goals
  • Anticipate any questions and or issues that might come up. If there might be a negative angle, make sure to practice the response that will address the issue and showcase how your organization is dealing with it.

Remember the key techniques to use in interviews:

  • Block and Bridge so you avoid unwelcome or unproductive questions and then transition to an area that fits your key message
  • Strategic interruption that can help to refocus a reporter so the spokesperson can link back to the key messages
  • Headline structuring can organize an interview as the spokesperson shares the overall message first and then adds supportive details, facts, anecdotes and examples that solidify the key point
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This post was written by Veronica Mikitka Reed

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