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Posts Tagged ‘Gerard Braud

Getting it Right is a Two-way Street

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I really thought Brad Phillips was spot-on in his blog post,   7 Things to Do When The Media Gets It Wrong, because we need to recognize that reporters have a daunting and time-sensitive job.

As in all interpersonal communications, talking things over is typically the most constructive approach.   Not communicating with media is at the end of the list, when all attempts to fix the problem have been unsuccessful.

I am a great believer in corporate transparency and story telling.  I have found that the best way to prevent mistakes is to always  supply a backgrounder with all of my releases so the reporter has all the necessary facts to write the story.

Having said that, there are situations when organizations should not communicate with media.  This following list is from *”At Ease With the Media” by Eric Bergman.    They are so critical to my job that I keep them posted to my computer:

  • Employees have not yet been notified about a specific issue
  • Employee, client or patient privacy is never breached for any reason
  • A disaster or emergency has occurred and next-of-kin have not been notified
  • Sensitive competitive information would be divulged
  • Security legislation would be breached
  • Union negotiations are underway and an information blackout is in effect
  • Legal counsel has advised against communications

What are some other situations?

I also keep former TV reporter Gerard Braud’s “Don’t Talk To The Media; 29 Secrets You Need to Know,” on my desk because he reminds the reader how difficult the task of reporting is and how little time they have to build their stories.

Reporters and organizations both bear the responsibility to disclose the truth, making getting it right a two-way street.

Links for this post:

Mr. Media Training:  http://www.mrmediatraining.com/index.php/2010/11/08/7-things-to-do-when-the-media-gets-it-wrong/

*”At Ease With the Media” by Eric Bergman. Used with permission by the author.

Gerard Braud:  http://www.donttalktothemedia.com/

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Written by Beth Ryan

November 9, 2010 at 8:43 pm

The best time to read this book is before you need it

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I used to work for two executives who would “wing it” with the local press, only to end up being irate because in their view the local media didn’t get it right.  The executives were actually being both honest and forthright, however the subject matter was highly technical and the media, under pressure to fill a blank newspaper every day with timely community news, didn’t have the time nor inclination to do the research, so they winged it as well – with disappointing results.

My first priority when I started working in communications was to establish a relationship with the local press, and provide background information that provided the information and context the local reporters needed to write better stories, also known as PR 101.

Fellow IABC member, Crisis Communications Consultant and Keynote Speaker Gerard Braud recently published a great book, “Don’t Talk To The Media; 29 Secrets You Need To Know Before You Open Your Mouth to a Reporter” where he shares his experience as a news reporter and provides 29 chapters of entertaining and thought provoking advice on media relations.  His book is light and refreshing, and while many of his points are sensible public relations, he provides that extra layer of expertise to take clients and practitioners to the next level of media awareness.

I first met Gerard at the 2009 IABC Heritage Region Conference where he gave his “When It Hits The Fan” Keynote.   He is definitely the guy you need when a crisis occurs, but he’ll be the first to tell you that the best time to craft a plan is when you don’t need it.

The best time to read this book is before you need it.

Read Gerard’s blog at http://www.braudcommunications.com/ – its good stuff