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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.

Adidas bosses need media training

11 August 2011
The Adidas bosses who appeared on Close Up last night could do with a round of media training as they made a number of mistakes. Because they took so long to react to the criticism around the price of the All Blacks jersey, they were on the back foot from the start. Mistake One The first mistake they made with the interview was fronting up with two spokespeople. This made it difficult for those watching at home to identify with their...

"I'm not a liar"? Alasdair Thompson

24 June 2011
Alasdair Thompson made a number of mistakes on TV last night when defending his view that women take more time off work because of period pain. There are a number of media training lessons to learn here. 1st Mistake This was saying it on NewsTalkZB yesterday morning in the first place. There are some things you just don't say, especially if you do not have research to back them up. 2nd Mistake This was even appearing on TV last night. He...

The art of answering media questions

20 May 2011
Answering questions from a journalist is NOT like answering questions from any other person, whether it be a boss, friend, colleague or family member. Context A media interview is NOT like a real conversation. In a real conversation, you have context, you understand the context, and usually your audience understands the context. If you are explaining something to an employee, you can reference something you said five minutes ago. If you are giving a speech, you can build one idea on...

Dealing with the media in a crisis

26 April 2011
How a company deals with the media in a crisis or adverse event can make or break its future success. That’s because public opinion is far more interested in how a company responds to the situation than the crisis itself. Preparedness The problem is that most businesses are unprepared for the media scrutiny, believing they will never face a crisis. But to constitute a crisis for a small or medium business, it doesn’t have to be a massive earthquake or a...

Reflexions on BP media handling of Gulf Oil spill one year on

20 April 2011
[caption id="attachment_586" align="alignright" width="300" caption="Tony Hayward"][/caption] BP CEO Tony Hayward did some good things when fronting the media after the gulf oil spill. He came across as humble, sympathetic and talked about the actions BP were planning. Mistakes But he also made some huge mistakes. These always outweigh the positives in a crisis, because there is no margin for error. His first big blunder was the claim that BP was not responsible for the spill, but was only responsible for cleaning...

Quake boss John Hamilton needs media training

1 April 2011
Civil Defenceboss in Christchurch John Hamilton is no natural in front of a TV camera. He has trouble expressing any emotion when talking to the media, unlike Bob Parker. That makes him look cold. He may be doing a wonderful job, but his inability to warm to the camera using his voice and facial expressions is an issue for him. He needs to know that unless he puts on a slight smile, even in a bad situation like this, he looks like...

Where is Ken Ring?

22 March 2011
After all the hype around Ken Ring's earthquake prediction for Canterbury on Sunday, the man himself seems to have disappeared. Any media trainer would have told Mr Ring to be available for media interviews on Sunday to defend himself, regardless of whether his prediction came true or not. By not being around, other commentators have had all the limelight, with 90 percent of them attacking 'The Moon Man'. There even seems to be some confusion as to what the prediction was....

Earthquake news buries Libya crisis

21 March 2011
The news coverage of the Christchurch earthquake highlights how one story can dominate the news at the expense of other stories. The crisis in Libya has been going on for weeks now, but because of the Christchurch earthquake, then the one in Japan, our newspapers and broadcasting media have not given it the prominance it would usually demand. This is understandable because the media has limited space available and these stories it is covering are huge. But it's a good lesson...
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Key bid on Peter's 'No' sign political genious

15 March 2011
John Key's decision to bid on the "No" sign used by Winston Peters at a press conference in 2008 was political genious. Mr Peters used the sign to deny that a $100,000 donation from businessman Owen Glenn had been used inappropriately. [caption id="attachment_325" align="alignright" width="200" caption="John Key"][/caption] The whole issue around the donation tainted Mr Peters and many believe it led to his demise at the 2008 General Election. By putting in the bid, Mr Key will not only be seen...

What is free media publicity?

1 January 1970
Free publicity is when journalists and editors produce stories through their media outlets about you or your business. This could be newspapers, radio, television or websites. How is it different to advertising? All media outlets have two departments, advertising and editorial. When you take out an advertisement, you deal with the advertising department. You can say what you like in the advertisement within reason, and pay a fee for the privilidge. On the other hand, with publicity, you deal with the...
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My Latest Blog Posts

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