While plenty of companies see scheduling an interview with journalists as a positive thing for the company, which can mean that they can call it a day, the reality is that the work is just getting started when that interview with the CEO is scheduled. Whether or not there is a deadline, preparation and planning for the interview is the goal to success.
Researching the Journalist
The first step after receiving a positive response from a journalist is for the company to take time to research through all of the previous articles or content from that journalist, and to get a better understanding of their unique style and approach.
Aside from their content with the media outlet, the research should also include their content on social media platforms, in order to get a better understanding of their personal perspectives on various topics, along with their interests or hobbies.
Reviewing Talking Points
Most CEOs already have a lot of things going on, which is why reviewing any potential talking points should be another one of the key steps to achieving success during interviews. The company should clearly lay out the main talking points that the CEO should go over during the interview, no matter what.
The CEO might know their stuff, but it’s up to the company to make sure that the interview will focus on a handful of key messages, no matter what the topic of the interview . After every talking point, there should also be some supporting data, facts, or stories that will create a more compelling picture for that point.
Based on the research from the first point, the company should also create a list of potential questions that could be asked during the interview. This list can include any questions that the journalist has already shared with the company, any questions that are related to announcements that the company has shared, questions about the industry in general, or any interesting, trending, or controversial topics where the CO can have a relevant perspective on the matter.
Rules and Answers
It’s important to remind the CEO that anything they share with the journalist can be reported in the media outlet. This is because in some cases, not all information is ready to be shared with an audience, for various reasons, and why staying on topic is essential. Additionally, the talking points that the CEO will be reviewing should only be guiding the answers to the potential questions from the journalists – they shouldn’t be created with a scripted answer in mind.
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