Lately, work around the Anglin PR office has included a lot of media relations. We coordinated interviews that spanned international time zones, played the role of field reporter and even introduced a national celebrity to genuine Oklahoma western wear. While we usually find our comfort in the controlled chaos of typical media relations, it’s important to remember the standard tactics still ring true.
Early Bird Gets…A Great Interview
When picking up William Moss – HGTV gardening expert at the Oklahoma City Home + Garden Show – for a morning of radio and television interviews, we were earlier than expected. William was ready to go so we took off. Even though we arrived absurdly early to the interviews, we had time to sit and chat with the interview hosts and producers to go over talking points, get comfortable with each other and even share a few personal stories and laughs. Being TOO early is almost impossible. The time shared before an interview can make for a more friendly and natural interview – something you just can’t script.
Flexibility Isn’t Just for Gymnasts
William, hailing from Chicago, wanted to take some authentic Oklahoma boots back home to the Windy City. While the stop at Stockyards City wasn’t scheduled, it was an experience that made William a bit more comfortable and provided some fun talking points in the interviews. Even though you should always stay focused on the logistics, it can still be rewarding – and fun! – to boot-scoot off the beaten path for a bit.
Learn from the Boys Scouts. Be Prepared.
When we dropped off celebrity chef Todd Wilbur at his Oklahoma City Home + Garden Show cooking stage, his first instinct was to check the refrigerator for the ingredients he would need for his upcoming cooking demonstration. He immediately saw he was short a stick of butter and an onion, nothing a quick grocery store run couldn’t fix. Always remember to check the list, check it again and make sure you’re early enough to fix anything you’ve forgotten.
Technology is a Beautiful Thing
Nabeel Qureshi is an international speaker, which could have made scheduling media interviews for his event at First Presbyterian Church Edmond tough. But Skype came to the rescue and connected Dr. Qureshi with an interviewer, resulting in a great story in the Sunday Oklahoman. Skype may not be a new technology, but remembering you have those tools can come in handy.
The Shortest Distance Between Two Points is…You!
This year’s Oklahoma Mission of Mercy was in Enid, not exactly a convenient location for major media outlets in Oklahoma. Since we knew media wouldn’t make the trek to the event, we took on the reporter role and gathered all the pieces necessary for a good story: pictures, video, press release and b-roll. By making this package available on Dropbox, we were able to immediately disperse information to the media without them having to leave their desks – helpful for any time-crunched reporter.
Media relations can be one of those parts of the job that we lose ourselves in the minutia of pitching, scheduling and confirming. But it’s nice to be reminded of how the tried-and-true foundations of media relations still work. And a little surprise here and there can create magic that even we public relations experts can’t schedule.