Many people are daunted by media exposure because of the fear of being embarrassed and ridiculed. It isn’t easy to handle media exposure, but with some training, you can turn it around and maximize its positive effect.
Executives often have to get in front of the public and answer difficult questions from journalists that challenge their knowledge or previous actions. Yet men and women who can effectively improve their public image will open the door to new business partnerships or roles that can advance careers.
You might claim that you don’t like being in the spotlight. However, many leaders have the responsibility to promote their brand, and customers want to know more about the face behind the brand. Instead of trying to avoid media exposure, you can take the opportunity to use it to your benefit and propel your career growth in the office.
How Does Media Influence Your Career?
Media exposure can improve your profile not only within your own organization but also in your industry. This opens the doors for other organizations to approach you for partnerships or job offers and allows you to expand your network. A better understanding of how to handle media exposure through education and training can help you the next time you have an interview lined up with a news organization.
Journalists are always looking for experts to feature in their news stories. For example, an independent mortgage broker who has niche expertise in the housing industry and the market in their area can share important information such as survey data that journalists can quote. A technology expert might be quoted in a journalist’s research report with their views on upcoming technological changes.
This positions the executive as the go-to thought leader, allowing them to share their insight and perspective regarding specific trends within the industry and world that might be impacting the local community. This can result in people becoming more aware of the executive and going to them if they have a question or are looking for business partnerships. Therefore, media can help you present yourself as an expert in your field.
Provides a Professional Brand Image
Being featured on news websites can help you improve your personal brand and build trust. Even if you are getting exposure because of your company, if you represent the company well and improve their public image, you will also improve your own credibility because of your association with a company with a positive image. This can help you in a future job search.
With earned media, the journalists control the reporting. Media training and good public relations practices are essential to ensure you deliver your intended message without any distortion while protecting your image and your company’s brand.
News Media Provides Greater Visibility
People will not reach out with opportunities if they don’t know who you are. Sharing survey data that your company has collected, gender equality practices that your company is adopting, or innovative services that your company delivers can help to raise your company’s visibility. You also benefit from having your name associated with a business that has a good image. It’s also an opportunity to showcase your work experience which will help you in a future job search.
Why is Media Training Important?
A bad interview can hurt one’s reputation. It’s a good idea to be prepared and understand how to communicate during an interview effectively. Media training helps a professional to hone their interview skills to interact with journalists effectively and receive the most positive coverage possible across multiple platforms.
Reporters can be impressed with someone who is good at being interviewed, so you will likely continue to be approached for quotes by news organizations. That can also support your personal brand which will open up more jobs for you
Less Likely to Get Misquoted by Journalists
While journalism seeks to provide factual information, you might sometimes be misunderstood and misquoted instead of the message you were trying to convey. Companies that are misquoted end up having to do damage control to recover their image. Coming to an interview without clarity on the key messages or being unprepared to answer difficult questions can increase the risk of being misquoted, which can also threaten your job prospects. Media training teaches you how to keep your message clear and concise while avoiding misquotes.
Use Journalism to Your Advantage
Whether it’s an interview for television or the newspaper, it’s important to take control of the conversation. Media training teaches a leader to maintain composure over the course of the interview to create the ideal outcome for themselves. Having a data-driven approach and clear responses can help you steer the interview in the right direction. In contrast, vague responses can cause the interviewer to use their journalism skills to challenge the interviewee’s unclear responses further.
Your non-verbal expressions matter as much as your verbal expressions. Media training teaches thought leaders and executives to optimize their body language, tone, and words to deliver a powerful message and win over journalists. Most people are petrified of being interviewed in real-time, whether it’s a live interview with radio stations or television. However, learning how to handle interviews and using media coverage platforms to promote a message can be one of the most powerful forms of marketing and make you a very attractive candidate for your next job.
Define the Key Messages
A PR company can help a business executive shorten and make their message more engaging. For example, a CEO should focus on delivering the benefits of their product or service in a language that suits their audience. It is worth noting that you shouldn’t have more than five key messages. Otherwise, it’ll dilute the impact of what you’re trying to say. With media training, you can learn how to use supporting facts and data to reinforce the message further.
Prepare Responses to Challenging Questions
It’s the job of the journalist to get clear answers and they may ask difficult questions to gain clarity on a particular subject. If controversy is involved, the public will often be asking the same questions. Media training helps executives prepare for challenging questions even if there are unexpected situations that catch them off-guard.
How Can You Improve Your Brand with a Media Appearance?
Getting media appearances can be a powerful way to increase recognition and instant credibility. Many successful leaders have used media appearances online or in-person to build their personal brand.
You might research publications that would highlight your skillsets and target a feature in those publications. For instance, an entrepreneur may consider publications such as Entrepreneur Inc, Forbes, and Huffington Post. You would then identify publishers, editors, and journalists related to these publications or news companies and pitch a story.
Build Your Brand in a Specific Niche
Many publications look for experts to feature. A thought leader should highlight their expertise in a specific niche, which increases the likelihood that a publication may approach them directly when they have a story they are working on.
Publicize Media Appearances
Publicize your media appearances on your social media and website. In the digital age, your social profile often acts as your name card. Adding banners such as “as seen in” or “featured on” on your website can add credibility when people want to find out more about you.
Careers Are Made From Successful Media Interviews – Ready For Yours?
Positive media coverage can help you establish authority in your field of expertise, leading to more visibility and career opportunities. While handling media exposure might not be something you’re comfortable with, a public relations consultant like Murnahan Public Relations can provide media training and give executives unbiased feedback on their media success. Additionally, a PR firm can train you to respond to the typical questions included in past interviews that a reporter may ask during an upcoming interview. As a result, executives will receive plenty of practice ahead of the interview and develop confidence in their communication power.