Effective Communication & Media Relations Diane Baedeker Petit Public Affairs Specialist USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service
One hour after hearing information, most people will retain only about 10 percent of what was heard.
Develop a communications plan • Who is your audience? • What do they know? • What do they want to know? • What are their needs and/or concerns? • What’s the best way to reach them? • Create an action plan and timeline • How will you evaluate success?
Publicity Brochures Fact sheets Website Media kits Posters Exhibits Presentations Give-away items Special events The communications toolbox Common message, look and feel.
Publicity and media relations • Publicity = news coverage • The news media help us communicate with our customers and potential customers. • How do you get publicity? • When you have news,let the media know about it.
Getting the word out • News releases • Media advisories Media contacts
A news releaseis... • Like a news article that you writeabout your own organization • Intended for publication • A tool for getting publicity • A way to communicate with your clients
A news release is not... • An advertisement • Guaranteed to be printed or aired • A letter to reporters or editors
What makes news? • Relevance • Is your news of local interest? • Why should I care? • Impact • How does your news affect me, my life, my family? • Timeliness • Is your news about an upcoming event or a current issue?
Writing a good news release • Most important facts in the lead paragraph • Details in later paragraphs • Be brief • Be accurate • Use correct grammar and spelling • Avoid jargon and acronyms
What, When, Where, Who, Why Important Details Misc. Info. News Release Structure The Inverted Pyramid
A media advisory is… • A tool for getting media coverage • An invitation to cover your story • Not intended for publication
A media kit… • News release • Fact sheet • Brochure • Bios of officials • Photographs • Camera-ready graphics • Your business card
Dealing with the media • Have a plan before speaking with the media. • Keep track of media calls. • Be brief. • Return calls promptly. • Avoid speculationand opinion.
Dealing with the media • Don’t joke with a reporter. • Don’t argue with a reporter. • Never ask to see a story before it goes to print. • It is OK to ask the reporter to read your quotes back to you.
Dealing with the media • Accentuate the positive. • Stick to your message. • Keep your cool. • Never say the words “no comment.” • There is no such thing as off the record.
Measures of success • News clips • Amount of literature distributed • Requests for information • Increased program participation • Increased revenue • Statistical analysis
Questions? Diane Baedeker PetitPublic Affairs SpecialistUSDA Natural Resources Conservation Service451 West Street, Amherst, MA email@example.com