pitch, pitching, phone

Don’t pitch me a client, pitch me a headline

By on May 19, 2017

I led two masterclasses on pitching yesterday, at a PR company I won’t disclose because my clients are always confidential. One thing became apparent during the session: everyone wanted to pitch their client to me. Which sounds perfectly logical. But it’s not. One of the delegates came out with something like this: “Hi, I’m calling with Read More...



Don’t say this to journalists

By on April 4, 2016

Last week I looked at things not to say to editors. Suppose you’re an interviewee rather than a writer: what would be my top five things not to say? In no particular order I’d recommend against the following; No comment. Even if you genuinely have nothing to say, this sounds evasive and as if you’re Read More...


Five things not to say to editors

By on March 30, 2016

What should you never say to an editor if he or she is commissioning you? I’ve been involved in setting up a new website for the New Statesman this month, editing numerous supplements for them and also editing Professional Outsourcing Magazine for more than a couple of years. It strikes me that there are still some Read More...


Tip Sheet: Before the media interview

By on March 18, 2016

Let’s assume you’ve done the tricky part and attracted the attention of the media. Whether local or national, you now need to prepare for the interview. Don’t assume you’ll get to see all the questions in advance (depending on what you might say, we don’t actually know all of them yet). It’s a free country Read More...


Media mistakes 10: Your media trainer won’t write about you

By on March 10, 2016

“I would never hire a media trainer who didn’t guarantee to write about my client immediately afterwards, I wouldn’t be doing my job.” This was the dismissal I had a few years ago from a formerly trusted contact who’d seemed interested in using my services. It was wrong on so many levels. I don’t come Read More...


Media mistakes 9: (Most) Journalists aren’t trying to trap you

By on March 1, 2016

Why did you hire me for media training? That’s a question I ask every training delegate I come across and the most common answer is that they want to avoid the traps journalists will lay. They’ve done interviews before and they weren’t sure of the journalist’s agenda or what he or she was up to. Read More...


broadcast, radio

Media mistakes 8: The interview won’t be on your terms

By on February 25, 2016

Press interviews can go wrong for a number of reasons. One I’ve seen often is that the interviewee believes that by stating what they want to be interviewed about, they can stop the journalist asking difficult questions or straying into other areas. I heard an interview on BBC Radio 4’s “Today” programme once in which Read More...


did you read the brief?

Media mistakes 7: I’ll take as much time as I want

By on February 16, 2016

I was listening to the Today programme on BBC Radio 4 the other day and it happened again – one of the interviewees came out with “Let me finish my answer”. I’ve had this, too, and it’s easy to assume journalists are being rude if they’re trying to hurry you along. So here’s the news: Read More...


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