Media Relations Spain

Key Messages in a Communications Strategy

Key Messages in a Communications Strategy - túatú Spain

Key Messages in a Communications Strategy - túatú Spain

Key messages are statements which synthesize the information of a message in a clear and simple way. Distinguished, specifically, for being very succinct.

They are announcements which have the intention of communicating just one subject (an idea, a concept, a fact, an indication, etc).

An effective key message cannot leave room for interpretation or second meanings. Furthermore it cannot be too brief or too extensive because it may not explain much or confuse the public respectively.

EFFECTIVE KEY MESSAGES CANNOT BE EDITED BY THE MEDIA, DUE TO THE FACT THAT THEY ARE INFORMATION IN A PURE STATE.

For example, some politicians use cryptic phrases or rhetorical speeches which are endless. This language can be good material for analysts, but they are far from being effective key messages in its transmission to the general public.

It is vital that the key messages have content, in other words, they cannot be rhetorical, otherwise they will not arouse interest from anybody and they will not fulfill their communication goal. This may seem obvious, but it is a frequent error made by those who present speeches full of sensationalism which has little relevant content for the public.

The inclusion of emotional references can be considered during the elaboration of key messages, as long as it is not used carelessly or superficially, its exploitation should have a main reason behind it.

The dynamic of the media may leave little space for the preparation of all the news which determine the present day. For this reason, when the broadcast of a message is made by a spokesperson in a clear, concise, ordered and attractive way, it will simplify the reporter’s labor, who will probably use these declarations with the minimum of cuts.

 The technique used to prepare key messages can be practiced by any spokesperson and it is also valid in order to assist in the elaboration any type of speech. Moreover, key messages are an exercise which may help those who are not necessarily great speakers, but have the duty to communicate to the public through the media.

We are talking about heads of various organizations that were not prepared to face a public appearance or an interview.

Journalists look for the concrete set of words of an individual and they appreciate it when they are able to transmit their ideas in plain words and short phrases but rich in content. A spokesperson with clear ideas and an accurate language creates far much more affinity than someone who speaks in a way which is diffuse and redundant.

Now we will review two examples of how the technique of key messages is well used.

WHEN COMMUNICATING IS VITAL

<<Remain calm and evacuate downtown Manhattan. My heart is with all of you. I’ve never seen anything like that. (…) I can only say that we will use all the resources we have to try to rescue as many people as possible. (…) Those in charge in the city are alive and we are evaluating the situation>> These were the words that Rudolph Giuliani, who at the time was the mayor of New York, said right after the terrorist attack of September 11th.

Simple phrases but full of meaning and integrity, in the middle of the great catastrophe and confusion, helped the people of Manhattan maintain calm and act in an orderly way and trust that things were under control.

Rudolph Giuliani took every opportunity he had when he was near to journalists to address the issue to the New Yorkers and transmit these messages.

Key messages are the axis of every public relations campaign, and so they must permeate all the documents that are given to the press (notes and dossiers), speeches of the spokespeople, institutional advertisements and in any information that is spread by the organization.

Media relations Spain: Top 5 Way to Prepare for a Media Interview

Media relations Spain: Top 5 Way to Prepare for a Media Interview

Media relations Spain: Top 5 Way to Prepare for a Media Interview

No, you can't control how the interview will be conducted, nor can you control the outcome. But you can influence it greatly by the way you present your personality and your skills. Being interviewed is an opportunity for the interviewee to showcase their business, interest, or cause. Keep in mind that journalists are doing a job - they have deadlines to meet and word counts to adhere to. Knowing how to talk to the press can help improve your chances of receiving favorable media coverage.

However, to make the interview memorable and successful takes preparation. Here are a few tips that you can use when preparing for every interview including virtual book tours, blog radio interviews, live teleseminars, recorded interviews and traditional media interviews:

1.    Prepare

When live on radio or television there is only one chance to get it right. Since you have more knowledge about the subject, its ideal to think about possible questions and also prepare your answers. Find out as much as you can about the program if it is pre-recorded or live? What are they expecting from you and what angle will you be talking from? - What are the question areas? Think about your most useful, interesting and relevant points to the appropriate audience.

2.    Know your message

Have a few key talking points in mind and stick with them as much as you can during the interview. Have the facts and research prepared to back up these points and come up with a few anecdotes and have some examples ready to illustrate your points. Practice delivering your messages beforehand, so you weed out awkward phrases and prevent yourself from stumbling through your key points.

3.    Be Buoyant & Enthusiastic

During an interview, boring answers will probably be edited out, and boring interviews will be dropped entirely. So make your delivery bright and enthusiastic, rather than boring and dull. Remember broadcasting is a performance! If you do not hold the audience's attention, there are plenty of rival channels people can switch over to.

4.    Make It Interesting and Relevant

This is especially important in television and radio - both entertainment mediums. The more engaging you are, the easier it is for the interviewer to produce an exciting piece for their audience. Remember, you are in the spotlight, so act accordingly. Remember to stress the points that are likely to interest the listeners or viewers rather than just your internal messages.

5.    Call to Action

Most people will remember the opening and closing of a radio interview. Always have a strong closing with a call to action, something you want listeners to do, i.e., attend the event or buy the product. And finally, remember to smile - when you smile you feel and sound much friendlier - and enjoy it!

Today, with the growing popularity of media, audiences in Spain, media interviewing is an effective way to reach and build credibility with a broad audience. Knowing how to talk to the press will ensure your key messages are clear and powerful - it's just another sale.