Almost all business executives and PR heads of enterprises have heard of media training, but very few have heard about it.

There are several dilemmas about enrolling in media training sessions and courses. Although the concept of preparing for a big interview with media reporters is not new, people still have trouble to understand the concept of formal training sessions led by eminent TV personalities and radio personalities.

Gary Vaynerchuk interview at RISE Conference
photo credit: RISE / Flickr

Who is it for?

Any appointed representative of your company, who is about to face the media will need media training. This can be your business founder, PR staff, your company CEO or your marketing heads.

A proper media training session can empower your team with the recent trends in popular media. New product launches, new company policies and the announcement of changes in the governing body of the company are critical situations that call for media guidance from trained experts. Therefore, any person suitable enough to convey these bits of information to the reporter or interviewer needs formal media guidance. This will prepare them for tackling the curveballs that journalists like to throw to keep the interview interesting.

There are situations, when senior PR professionals, marketing heads, company CEOs, brand managers and business owners need to be a part of the same training session. Businesses usually need this in the event of group discussions, public press releases and group interviews. Attending media training sessions together keeps the views of multiple representatives cohesive. There is no confusion in the key message, and there is no trouble with communication.

Media training session

What defines a good media training session?

Firstly, no media training session can be either good or effective without the expertise of trained media personnel. The experience of a media personality qualifies them for conducting sessions, provided they have conducted several interviews in their professional lifetime. In addition to that, a good session also needs a little help from technology to remain relevant to modern interview scenarios.

Video camera training

You may not be focusing on TV exclusively, but even vBlogs and YouTube interviews have just as much reached (if not more) right now. Training sessions involve live video camera training. The trainer records several mock interview sessions and plays them back for the closed group. Following several evaluations and discussions, they chalk out several points the participant(s) need to work on. This precedes another round of interview on camera and evaluation.

Introduction to tough questions

While facing a real journalist you will sometimes find yourself in uncomfortable situations. Whether it is a question about a deranged ex-partner or the topic of recent online security breaches; finding hairy questions during interviews is more common that Hollywood controversies. A large part of the session focuses on how to face these questions and answer them tactfully. The trick is to convince the audience about your trustworthiness and at the same time satisfy the requirements of the particular question.

Training sessions will help you learn how to bridge topics to move smoothly from unfriendly questions to popularity domains for the sake of subtle brand promotions.

Preparation for the interview

Several training sessions sometimes precede the formal interview. While some professionals need only half a day’s time to prepare, others can take up to a week depending on the raw material they need to cover for the interview. For example – if it is a new brand launch, the session is usually simpler than a re-launch interview. It all depends on the media platform your team will be facing, the strength of your team, the motive of the interview and your brand requirements.

Professional, experienced media trainers never promise the same session length or content for all companies. These approaches need to be tailored, and you need to be very careful about picking the right training center since this will determine the future of your brand significantly.

Media interview session
photo credit: QSO4YOU / Flickr

When do you need media training?

If you are looking at a TV or radio interview in a week, then you should find media training services effective immediately. In fact, you should never wait until the final hour to enroll in media training session. Whether you have to face an interview now or two months later, keeping your team prepared always inculcates confidence. It helps business teams to work with each other in a coordinated manner.

Online refresher courses and whitepapers are effective, but only when you have a strong foundation in media management. Therefore, substituting media training sessions with online reading material might not be an answer to your impending crisis. While picking your training center always look for one that will allow your teams to train together for a group interview, find one that has good reviews and ratings from previous clients and definitely pick the one lead by a group of experienced media professionals, who know how have years of experience dealing with different kinds of media platforms.