Pete Burdon

Pete is a leading New Zealand media trainer and regular blogger for his company, Media Training NZ . He has helped leaders from all sectors of society communicate with the media and other stakeholders. Pete is a former daily newspaper reporter and press secretary in the New Zealand government. From these roles, he understands the media process from both sides of the camera.

Labour getting the message about their message?

10 June 2016
Labour’s big problem over recent years is its failure to come up with a clear and concise message to focus on consistently. National are the masters of this. John Key and his ministers always bring things back to the need for a strong economy, and go into Elections with their core message that their stewardship of the economy is what will maintain or grow people’s standard of living. New Zealand First are about putting kiwi citizens ahead of foreign interests, while...

Greens deal will further dilute Labour's message

1 June 2016
The Labour Party has struggled to produce a concise message that explains what it stands for since Helen Clark left office in 2008. This is a major reason it has done so badly ever since. This new deal with the Green Party will make it even harder to tell voters what it stands for. Labour Parties have traditionally been focused on the rights of workers and on the left side of politics. But this changed in the 1980s when it moved...

Best opposition Budget quotes

27 May 2016
Most comment on the Budget has been predictable and quite boring, but the leaders of the opposition parties did at least have a few interesting quotes/sound bites between them. In this day and age, it’s no longer enough to make an interesting point. You have to dress it up in an interesting way so the news media will use it and people will remember it. Here are what I consider the best ones from opposition leaders. Andrew Little: “This is very...

Steven Adams and 'Quick Little Monkeys'

18 May 2016
I don’t believe for a minute that Steven Adams meant any harm when he described Golden State’s guards as ‘quick little monkeys’, but it raises two important points about media interviews. Firstly are the obvious cultural differences. What means one thing to one culture or country can mean something totally different in another. The term ‘monkey’ is associated with racism in the US, but not in New Zealand. These differences are common, even among similar countries. I still remember an incident...

My book and online course are here

11 May 2016
My book “Media Training for Modern Leaders” and accompanying online PRACTICAL course “The Media Training Academy” are here. Media Training for Modern Leaders focuses on everything today’s leaders need to know about the news media. A major part of this is how to be ready for media scrutiny and how to master media interviews. There are also Chapters on attracting media publicity and communicating during a crisis or adverse event. It's unique because each Chapter has a specific section on what's...

Sacked TV staff create Mark Weldon headlines

5 May 2016
If you needed any proof of what journalists look for in their quotes and sound bites, look no further than the Twitter posts of former Media Works reporters when Mark Weldon announced his resignation as CEO of the company this week. Clearly the overwhelming majority of those who lost their jobs in the Weldon-led restructure were happy he was leaving. But instead of just tweeting that they were happy about the news, they dressed up their points with interesting language. They...

Trump success due to changing news media needs

28 April 2016
The success of Donald Trump is not as surprising as many people believe purely because of the changing needs of the news media. The amount of time media spokespeople have to make their points continues to reduce as the public are flooded with information from a huge variety of sources. This is where Trump comes into his own. He may lack any policy detail, but he’s the master of the 7 second sound bite, and that’s all he gets in the...

Media advice for underdog Mayoral candidates

20 April 2016
If non-high profile Mayoral candidates want any chance of winning their races this year, they need to become aggressive publicity hounds with a message to tell. If they don’t do this, they have no chance. What should they do? Firstly, they need to be proactive with the news media. This doesn’t mean just being available when a reporter wants to interview you, its about presenting that reporter with a carrot that’s too irresistible to ignore. Here’s an example. Before I continue...

Key still creating great sound bites

14 April 2016
John Key is still a great media communicator. Not only is this because of his effective body language, but also the words he uses to communicate what he wants to get across. Media training specialists all tell their clients to focus on key messages when they are talking to the news media. But the expert spokespeople take this a step further. How? They dress these points into more interesting language. This means reporters are far more likely to use them as...

Clark would win hands down if it came down to communication skills

5 April 2016
Clark’s communication skills would see her win hands down If the campaign to become UN Secretary General was like any other, Helen Clark’s communication skills would get her across the line comfortably. We saw these skills for nine years, while others have now seen them in her current UN role. So what are they? Clark has a unique ability to get her points across briefly, clearly and in an interesting way. We all witnessed this on television when she was Prime...
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My Latest Blog Posts

28 April 2022
Luxon's tax question problem and possible answer
3 February 2022
Christopher Luxon on the money with 'caring' comment
16 December 2021
Why Greg Foran is my Media Communicator of the Year

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