The 11 Best Advanced Media Training Tips

Written by Brad Phillips @MrMediaTraining on August 15, 2013 – 6:02 am

Since starting this blog in August 2010, we’ve published dozens of advanced media training tips. Many of them have gotten buried over time, so I’ve gone back and selected the 11 posts that remain as useful today as they were when they were published.

I hope you enjoy this collection of advanced media training tips. If you do, I’d be grateful if you’d consider sharing it through your social media networks.

Without further ado, here are 11 of our best advanced media training tips!

Woman Interviews Man

1. One is One Too Many

Many companies, nonprofits, and government agencies encounter moments when they think it might be a good idea to place a specific tragedy into a larger context. Here’s a better idea.

2. Before You Can Convince, You Have To Connect

Many people representing a cause or political party are so intent on explaining their ideology that they fail to align their messages to their audience. They’d do better if they started with areas of agreement.

3. The Filibuster

Can you survive a tough interview by running out the clock?

4. Answering All or Nothing Questions

When a reporter asks you if you can guarantee that something will happen “every time” or “never again,” you may have a tough time answering the question. Here’s an approach that works.

5. It’s Not This, It’s That

By reframing an issue and refusing to acknowledge the narrow frame the reporter drew around it, you might be able to get your key quote in the story.

6. Surviving a Tough Press Conference

Here’s a technique that will allow you to look open and transparent while limiting your exposure to the press.

7. Why The “Real” Answer Is Often The Best One

Some questions don’t have a great answer. But a lot of the time, the perfect answer has been sitting in front of you the entire time.

8. Redefine Negative Words

Adopting the language of your opponent’s most loaded charge can neutralize their strongest argument.

9. The Friendly Opponent Quote

Most people quote someone who supports their position. Sometimes, it’s even more powerful to quote a source the audience wouldn’t expect you to embrace.

10. Comment Without Commenting

Just because you shouldn’t ever use the words “no comment” doesn’t mean you have to reveal everything you know to every reporter who asks.

11. Be Boring

Should you ever “be boring” on purpose? Can “nice and dull” be a winning media relations strategy?


Want more tips? You’ll find 101 tips to better media interviewing in The Media Training Bible: 101 Things You Absolutely, Positively Need to Know Before Your Next Interview.

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  • About Mr. Media Training

    The Mr. Media Training Blog offers daily tips to help readers become better media spokespersons and public speakers. It also examines how well (or poorly) public figures are communicating through the media.

    Brad Phillips is the Founder and Managing Editor of the Mr. Media Training Blog. He is the president of Phillips Media Relations, a media and presentation training firm with offices in NYC and DC.

    Brad Phillips

    Before founding Phillips Media Relations in 2004, Brad worked as a journalist with ABC's Nightline with Ted Koppel and CNN's Reliable Sources and The Capital Gang.

    Brad tweets at @MrMediaTraining.

    Christina Mozaffari is the Senior Writer for the Mr. Media Training Blog. She is the Washington, D.C. vice president for Phillips Media Relations.

    Brad Phillips

    Before joining Phillips Media Relations in 2011, Christina worked as a journalist with NBC News, where she produced stories for MSNBC's Hardball with Chris Matthews, NBC Nightly News, and The Today Show.

    Christina tweets at @PMRChristina.

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