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Media Training NZ Blog

Media communicator of the year goes to EQC Boss Ian Simpson

18 December 2013
He’s been under intense pressure all year, but EQC boss Ian Simpson has done a great job under the media spotlight. There are few tougher environments than multiple interviews with John Campbell. This is particularly so knowing that Campbell Live had received thousands of complaints from disgruntled homeowners. The first skill Mr Simpson showed was his ability to genuinely empathise with the earthquake victims. He always came across as sensitive and sincere. Some spokespeople find this difficult. Where victims are involved,...

Obama speech shows the camera is always rolling

13 December 2013
The criticism levelled at Barack Obama for joining the Danish PM in smiling for a self-taken photograph overshadowed the US President’s excellent speech at Nelson Mandela’s funeral.This raises an important media training point. If you are being interviewed by a reporter or presenting to a group where media are present, you are on the record the entire time. If you give a great speech or are totally satisfied with an interview you have given, don’t assume the media are no longer...

Forestry group should be congratulated for All Blacks analogy

5 December 2013
Earlier this week, Hancock Forestry Management was criticised for using an All Blacks analogy when discussing the recent spate of deaths in the industry. I congratulate them. Use of analogies is something we encourage in both our media training and presentation training workshops. It helps people remember the point being made. The issue came to media attention when a meeting of 90 forest contractors was told that the All Blacks perfect season this year was taken one game at a time....

Craig needs a consistent message for media interviews

28 November 2013
Conservative Leader Colin Craig may be in the news regularly over recent months, but his lack of a consistent message and ability to get it through is getting him into trouble. We always tell our media training clients that they need a strong three-point media message ready whenever they face the media. This is not to say they don’t answer media questions, but it’s something they keep referring back to. Not only does this let people know what they stand for,...

Asset Sales issue highlights important media training lesson

21 November 2013
The term ‘Asset Sales’ has been used by opposition political parties and the media ever since the government proposed selling a minority shareholding in a few SOEs before the last Election. But the current government has not sold a single asset, or even suggested doing so. It still owns the SOEs. It has just sold some shares in them. Therefore, to say they are selling assets is totally incorrect. This leads me to an important media training lesson.  If a journalist...

Russell Norman outburst part of media race against Labour

14 November 2013
Russel Norman’s use of the Philippines disaster to push his political agenda this week may have been directly linked to the media training skills of Labour Leader David Cunliffe. When Cunliffe became Labour Leader, I predicted in this blog that he would take a lot of media publicity away from the Greens. Former leader David Shearer was not good at giving reporters the sound bites they wanted. This meant they often went to Norman for opposition comments instead. My prediction has...

Peter Marshall, Roast Busters and media training

8 November 2013
Police often appear too laid back when discussing sensitive issues. But Commissioner Peter Marshall did well on Campbell Live last night, showing just how important body language is when the stakes are high. The reputation of Police has been put to the test lately. Many believe they have not taken the Roast Busters issue seriously. Others think this is a symptom of a wider systemic problem. What Police may not realise is that the public will be judging their response to the...

Colin Craig, the Conservative Party and media training

1 November 2013
Colin Craig comes across as pretty genuine on TV, but there is one piece of media training advice I would give him to improve his performance. He needs to express himself more with his hands. His voice tends to sound monotone most of the time, and that’s purely because he is not expressing himself with his hands. This is something our media training clients find surprising, because there is still a myth out there that you should not use your hands,...

Coverage of deep sea oil drilling highlights media training skill

25 October 2013
The National Party has failed to get a good news message out through the media about its support of deep sea oil drilling, despite the many benefits it would bring. With issues like this, reporters and presenters can take a particular line that makes it hard to get the alternative viewpoint across. Campbell Live is often guilty of this. But there are ways to get these views out. We always share these with our media training clients. Simon Bridges clearly had...

Media training lesson from Len Brown affair

17 October 2013
The most important media training advice people in a similar position to Len Brown could take is to spill all the beans in one swoop. I'm not saying there is more to come, but if there is, he needs to front up and tell it all now. Without comparing the Auckland Mayor's situation to Tiger Woods, the golfing star failed to front up at all when his infidelity was uncovered. From a media training perspective, all this did was allow new stories...
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