Media Relationships

Course Type: In-Company | Course Category: Communications

Course Introduction

Becoming a valuable source and influencing journalists

What's it about?

All journalists have contacts they can use for background briefing, off the record reporting, a quick quote just before a deadline, or simply a call for an update. You can build a level of trust and credit by being one of these contacts, earning yourself the right to say ‘we want some publicity on this, is there anything you can do?’. Also, when things go wrong you are more likely to persuade journalists to work with you to resolve things. This workshop will provide guidance on how to nurture respectful and mutually beneficial relationships with the media.

Who should attend?

This workshop will benefit anyone who engages with the media at any level. The focus is on the actual relationship between the individuals.

Learning outcomes

  • Understand how the media works: news organisations, hierarchies, news cycles
  • Know your subject: understanding your work but researching journalists too
  • Develop incisive and accessible media messages to sell a story
  • Handling difficult reporters


Participants will benefit from being able to get to the point quickly and engage the media by making their messages – whether written or spoken -- relevant and accessible. Organisations will benefit from having staff who can deliver group messages clearly and confidently to a media audience.

Course Structure Highlights

  • Get to know journalists who cover your patch
  • Who are they
  • What matters to them
  • What are they particularly interested in
  • When are their deadlines
  • Take the rough with the smooth
  • When you can’t get something published
  • When you are misquoted
  • Dangers: dealing with ambitious reporters and freelancers, handling calls from unknown journalists, understanding what off-the-record means, socialising with the media
  • Reputation Management – Honesty, Accuracy, Accessibility

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