Working with the Media

The media has an important role to play in the life of community and voluntary organisations. It can enhance organisations’ profiles, enabling them to raise awareness of their activities, to reach out to potential new supporters and to influence policy debate. It also needs to be considered as an important part of crisis management in the unlikely event of the organisation receiving unfavourable publicity.

Working with the media is not about sending hundreds of press releases

‘The media’ is a broad term that includes local, national, international press, radio and television, both generalist and specialist. Working effectively with the media is time consuming. The first step is developing a policy on what kind of relationship your organisation wishes to have with which parts of the media.

The next step is ensuring that you can do the following:

  • Build and maintain relationships with sympathetic journalists and broadcasters over time
  • Appoint a spokesperson(s) for the organisation and make sure that they are appropriately trained to do the job
  • Develop the ability to distil all that you do into a very short but clear and powerful message
  • Plan for media involvement, and appoint someone responsible, from the very start of planning any project, including events and conferences.

Working with the media is not about sending hundreds of press releases when you have an upcoming event and hoping for the best! If you do not have experience of dealing with the media or feel that you are getting nowhere, you should seek training.

Specialist communications training with The Wheel >>