Talking to writers, editors, reporters, or any member of the media is an important part of promoting yourself. It means that you have a chance to explain what you are all about directly to the person writing about it and you will be able to show yourself in your best light. Hopefully. There are a few things to keep in mind when talking with media in order to make sure you really do come across the way you intend to and to make it more likely that the piece will come out positive and get your message across successfully.
- Be genuine. First and foremost, it is important to be yourself and be honest. If you try to do anything else you will come across as fake. There should be no need to try to be anything other than honest, and that should be your number one priority.
- Be prepared. Know your facts, know what you want to say, be familiar with your message and the key takeaways that you want the writer to come away with.
- Remember that everything you say can be on the record. When you are talking to media, they are doing a job and are not your friend. They may be very nice and casual about it, and they may be someone you are in contact with often and feel like you have a relationship with, but still be careful about what you say. Anything you say may end up in an article, sometimes taken out of context, or sometimes including details that you hadn’t meant to make public. Be careful about joking or saying something negative that you wouldn’t want to get out.
- Be polite. Thank them for their time and make sure they know that if they need a source on any article in the future that is in your industry you will be happy to help. It should be a symbiotic relationship: they are helping you by getting your story to the public, but you are helping them by providing an interesting, worthy story for their outlet.