Media Training NZ Blog

US debates show importance of body language in media training

25 October 2012
Most people think media training is all about getting messages across to media audiences, but this is only part of the puzzle. This couldn’t be illustrated better than in the recent presidential debates in the US. During the first debate, most people thought President Obama lost. A big part of this was because he had his head down when his challenger Mitt Romney was addressing him. From a media training perspective, this made Obama look defeated and non-presidential. On the other...

Superannuation confusion highlights media training point

20 October 2012
Recent coverage showing that John Key was unaware his Commerce Minister had asked the Retirement Commissioner to look at the superannuation age of entitlement raises an important media training issue. While difficult in this situation because a Prime Minister needs to speak on all portfolio areas, it does show how important it is for issues to be fronted by just one spokesperson. This is a major lesson for other organisations. This includes schools, businesses, not for profits or any other group....

Shearer shows media training progress in Dotcom affair

12 October 2012
Labour claims that a video exists of John Key joking about Kim Dotcom with the GCSB before he supposedly knew about the man may be a total fabrication, but the whole affair has shown the media training progress of David Shearer. The Labour leader still has work to do, but the whole issue has shown that his media training appears to be helping him communicate more clearly and concisely. His long-winded and complex answers to questions are seen less often, so...

School closures highlight media training grey area for politicians

4 October 2012
One of the first things we tell our media training clients is that they are usually better to front up to issues they are being attacked on. Otherwise, their side of the story will never be heard. This brings up an interesting point that has come to light this week when it comes to government ministers. Campbell Live invited Education Minister Hekia Parata onto the show to discuss the many clear mistakes that had emerged from the Ministry of Education figures...

Key uses classic media training technique in Dotcom case

27 September 2012
John Key may have been in the gun this week over the unlawful spying on Kim Dotcom by the GCSB, but he has used a classic media training technique we recommend our clients use when dealing with similar events. From a media training perspective, any preparation for media scrutiny must involve the development of three key points. Expressing regret is often the first one, as it was here. This regret wasn’t directed at the victim as it is in most situations...

Key shows media training skills with school closures

21 September 2012
The government announcement that a number of schools in Christchurch will either close or amalgamate was always going to be unpopular, but John Key has shown his media training skills in his response to the anger. Issues like this are never easy to win for a government, because no matter how justifiable, facts never win over emotion. With 4500 school students leaving Christchurch after the Earthquake, it’s inevitable that schools will have to close. But try telling that to a community...

ACC make another serious media training mistake

13 September 2012
The first thing we tell our media training clients is that their organisation must have a single designated spokesperson on any issue with a competent substitute ready to step in at any time. This is for two reasons. Firstly, it prevents mixed messages getting through to the media. And secondly, it's because anyone who talks to the media must have been through a media training course. Over the last week, ACC have failed on both counts. Firstly, when finally agreeing to...

Hone shows media training skills by use of the N word

6 September 2012
Hone Harawira may infuriate many people, but his use of the word ‘nigger’ this week shows how his media training skills keep him in the headlines. By saying on Twitter that “John Key can tell his house nigger boys what to do” people were clearly going to think he was talking about the Maori Party leadership. But soon he distanced himself from that, saying he was referring to National MPs. From a media training standpoint, this was a clever tactic, although...

Media Training tip for Louisa Wall

31 August 2012
She’s been effective at getting her views about same sex marriage across, but there’s one piece of media training advice that would make Louisa Wall be heard more clearly. She needs to ditch the big earrings. In every television appearance, she wears large earrings that constantly wobble when she moves her head. This can distract people from what she is saying. These have not been seen since the days of Christine Rankin. We tell our media training clients to dress conservatively...

Events highlight importance of media training for school leaders

24 August 2012
Events of the past few weeks and issues that will soon confront schools are why principals and board chairs should all have a media training course under their belt. Tragic deaths of pupils and horrific sexual abuse by teachers have suddenly thrust a few schools into the national media spotlight. Some have done well from a media training perspective, while others have been conspicuous by their absence. Often people learn the hard way that media training should be a fundamental part...
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