Reporters and Editors

On the first day of my first corporate internship, which was with an ­industry-leading manufacturer, the media relations director handed me a news release and a list of trade media. My task was to call each of the editors and reporters on the list—more than 300 of them, from New York City to Los Angeles—and pitch them on a new product being launched across the United States. Before that day, I had not ever talked one-on-one with a news reporter.

Has your introduction to media relations been similar? I certainly hope not. However, few executives receive the background, briefing, and coaching they need to be truly successful as spokespeople. There can be an assumption that, given your title, you can talk to anyone ...

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