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    Why Media Training is Important in 2024

    Between social media apps, live TV, and countless streaming services, we’re exposed to and captivated by all sorts of digital media. Why? Visual stimuli make facts or resources more memorable. Since 2021, video consumption among the U.S. population has grown by 7.7%, with U.S. customers “spending 454 minutes (seven hours and 34 minutes) a day watching digital media.” 


    Today, it’s impossible to gauge what might end up “going viral” on any of these channels. It could be an uncomfortable podcast interview or a poorly worded X post. Or even no response at all to a situation that warrants a corporate response can capture attention.


    If you or your company hasn’t invested in media training to navigate the nuances of today’s media, this is your sign.


    The importance of media training

    Media training creates the necessary skills to articulate ideas concisely, handle questions confidently, and master a proper online presentation. Today’s media landscape can be unpredictable. Depending on the topic and the spokesperson’s experience with the media, it might be difficult to maintain poise and professionalism during unexpected situations, such as challenging questions or technical difficulties. If unprepared, a discussion with the media can be more harmful than helpful.


    The benefits of media training


    Individuals and organizations must effectively communicate their messages with the media. If the media can’t understand the message, it’s unlikely to resonate with the targeted audience. As any video or audio recording can be shared globally within seconds, it’s important to master conveying key messages out loud. Whether the content's outcome is to inform, influence, or connect with an audience, seizing the opportunity to have your audience take in visual or audible content can ultimately enhance credibility and impact. 


    As podcasts become another avenue for audiences, with “over 464 million podcast listeners worldwide, which is projected to reach 504.9 million by 2024,” individuals must communicate effectively so audiences can grasp the speaker’s tone, demeanor, and overall sentiment without visual cues.


    What to consider for media training


    Media training benefits anyone who is an outward representative of a brand. 

    One common challenge when speaking to the media is answering direct questions. Often, individuals want to share as much information as possible or go off on their own tangent. If you or your client tends to provide long-winded responses, balance preparation and clarity to facilitate a concise and simple interaction with the media. Even excessive preparation might risk an individual becoming too overwhelmed with information and unable to separate what’s most important to say when answering the question.



    A solution? Simplify key messages. 

    Practice answering various questions with shorter, essential answers rather than overloading your response with unnecessary details that might confuse the audience. Be aware of the target audience to tailor your message effectively and ensure resonance. Once the objectives and key messages are clear, the participant will effectively communicate their message while meeting the needs and interests of the audience.



    Proper interviewing skills go beyond giving great verbal answers. 


    Nonverbal cues and actions can be scrutinized, and any signs of being thrown off can undermine one’s professionalism. Emphasize the importance of paying attention to nonverbal communication, such as the individual and interviewer's body language and tone of voice. To ensure the participant can remain authentic and professional, include exercises to improve delivery, posture, and overall presentation.



    Even if it seems like just another internal meeting, approach it with the same level of preparation as an actual media engagement. 


    The audience of this internal media training may consist solely of colleagues or team members; however, it provides more opportunities to receive feedback. Treating the meeting seriously allows individuals to turn practice into habits that will prepare them for any interview scenario.  


    Incorporate realistic scenarios into training sessions to prepare individuals for real-world media interactions. Practice various interview styles and teach individuals how to navigate various media platforms, handle challenging questions, and overcome technical difficulties — a common occurrence in the Zoom meeting world. 




    Building authentic connections with journalists helps you understand how they prefer to be pitched — so you can secure your next team win. Podcasts like Coffee with a Journalist give you exclusive intel into hundreds of journalists and their top tips for PR professionals to land stories.


    If you're looking for tools for guiding your outreach and follow-up strategy, tap into our arsenal of tools to make pitching the easiest part of your job. Create a profile and try it out for free today!


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