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The go-to guy for media

April 29, 2013

TV reporter

I’ve been on both sides of journalism: the reporter and the subject. My ties with media outlets have helped me, my company and my clients talk with audiences they might not normally reach.

It makes me the go-to guy.

You want to be the media’s go-to guy for specific topics. Mine are social media, blogging, technology, trends and communication. My friend (and client) Jen Barnett, co-founder of Freshfully, is the go-to girl for farming, food, agriculture, produce, technology and entrepreurism.

You become the go-to guy when you provide quotes and soundbites on a regular basis to media outlets, helping reporters tell a story to their audiences. You answer their calls and texts and show up on time and ready to answer questions. You provide them with other sources and make them look good with their editors and directors and viewers and readers.

You send them media releases on a regular basis and feed them a steady diet of ideas, tips and the occasional bit of gossip.

You practice your interview skills ahead of time and help them understand complex topics quickly.

You build good relationships over time so they can depend on you on tight deadlines.

Being the go-to guy means waiting patiently. You may pitch ideas and interviews for weeks and months with zero nibbles. And then, you get a surprise call to go on camera, as happened to me last week. (See my interview on Fox 6.)

The go-to guy is flexible and energetic, knowledgeable and humble, with just a hint of swagger.

And in building media relations, the go-to guy isn’t known only to the media but to the community as well.

Photo: Chris (CC)

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